Hi, I’m Nico Ng, and I’ve returned to TPK with a stunning hand lettering tutorial. Today, I’ll guide you through how to create geometric hand-lettered “SEIZE THE DAY” artwork using a 5-inch Composition Ruler. Keep in mind that you can adapt these instructions to different paper sizes or create a smaller version in your journal or notebook using the 3-inch Composition Ruler. Freehand drawing is also an option!
Begin by centering your composition ruler on the paper and marking the measurement markers. Then, draw the center line to guide your word placement.
Next, create a border around the paper that’s approximately 0.5″ from the sides of the page and 1″ from the top and the bottom of the page.
Now, use your composition ruler to draw lettering shapes as shown below. Shoot for two curved banners on the top and the bottom and a rectangle in the center.
3. Plan Your Letters
Now, use a pencil to lightly sketch letter skeletons. For this hand lettering project, you’ll be using a bold sans serif style for the words “Seize” and “Day”, so draw those a bit thicker than “the”.
The word “the” will be in a script style with contrast. Try to accurately sketch the thick and thin parts of the letters, even when sketching freehand.
4. Make a 3D Effect
To create a long 3D shadow effect, draw two reference points: one at the top center of the word “Seize” and another at the bottom center of the word “Day.”
From the bottom reference point, draw lines to the edges and corners of the word “seize.” You can hold your pencil at the reference point and rotate your ruler from that point to locate the correct position easier.
Repeat this step from the top reference point to the edges and corners of the word “day.”
5. Outline the Letters
This is the part of the hand lettering tutorial where the piece starts to come to life! Use your gold marker to outline the words “Seize” and “Day”.
Then, use a black marker to outline the 3D effect and the word “the.”
Then, use the black marker to draw a wavy border that roughly follows your border pencil guide.
6. Fill In the Blanks
Once your ink has dried completely, erase the pencil guides. Then, fill in “Seize” and “Day” with the gold marker.
Once you’ve done that, use the black marker to fill in the 3D effect. Then, fill in the border with a black brush pen (a brush pen makes for faster coverage).
7. Add a Bevel Effect
To add a simple bevel effect, draw an inline at the center of the gold letters using the white gel pen. Leave a space between the inline and the ends of the letters.
Then, connect the ends and corners of the letters to the inline, and draw diagonal lines on the curved parts of the letters. You can use the image below as reference where to draw the bevel lines.
8. Add Festive Embellishments
Let’s finish up this hand lettering tutorial by adding a few festive decorations in the negative space that remains! You can make your lettering piece more visually appealing by adding random sizes of sparkles, dots, diamonds, stars, and confetti around the lettering in gold and black.
Then, use white ink to write the words “Carpe Diem” in your favorite script or calligraphy style along the bottom part of the border.
Congratulations! You’ve created a new lettering piece that you can use to decorate your space or share with someone to inspire them.
I hope that you enjoyed this hand lettering tutorial, and I would love to see your own “Seize the Day” project. If you like the tutorials that I’ve been writing for TPK lately, please let me know! You can reach out to me via DM on Instagram (@nicong.co) or by email at [email protected].
Let’s keep learning, growing, and inspiring together! 🌟