I started offering calligraphy workshops in 2015. As someone who isn’t a natural-born public speaker (even if it’s a tiny group of 12), I didn’t expect to like teaching! I quickly found, however, that workshops are just another platform by which to connect with creative people and get to “geek out” over a shared passion: calligraphy. This year, I’m pleased to offer six beginner’s modern calligraphy workshops on various dates sprinkled throughout the spring and summer!
What to Expect from TPK Calligraphy Workshops
This year, all the workshops I’m teaching are Beginner’s Modern Calligraphy Workshops. They are best suited for people who have little to no experience with dip pen calligraphy! My calligraphy workshop is for you if you:
- Want to learn how to use both a straight and an oblique calligraphy pen (Don’t know what an oblique pen is? See this article.)
- Have no calligraphy experience – or – you have some calligraphy experience, but feel like you’re not doing it “right”
- Desire a personalized learning experience that will build you a solid calligraphy foundation in a matter of hours
- Want personal feedback and corrections on your writing
- Wish to learn about different calligraphy supplies and techniques (e.g.switching out nibs, writing with white ink)
- Want positive motivation to continue on in your calligraphy journey
We’ll kick off the workshop with a brief explanation of what calligraphy is, and how to create it with any pen. After that, we’ll switch our focus to using the straight pen and the beginner-friendly Nikko G nib. After a few minutes of practice, we’ll experiment with a more advanced nib (the Brause EF66), and then the right-handed folks in the group will switch to using an oblique pen! (For lefties, the oblique pen unit will focus on using a straight pen to create calligraphy styles at a 55 degree slant.) Finally, we’ll conclude the workshop with a short unit over how to create white calligraphy.
What Supplies are Included?
When you arrive at the workshop, you’ll notice that all supplies are provided for you, and they’re yours to take home! I provide the highest quality tools possible for you. The truth is that I could compromise the quality of the supplies to offer cheaper workshops or cut my profit margin, but I want you to have the tools that you need to ensure your success. A plastic-flanged oblique just won’t cut it, nor will cheap, watery ink.
Here’s what you can expect to take home:
- One Nikko G nib
- One Brause EF66 nib
- Straight Pen Holder
- Oblique Pen Holder (for right-handed learners*)
- Sumi ink
- Dr. Ph. Martin’s Bleed Proof White ink
- Workshop exclusive worksheet (redesigned this year!)
- Homework packet
*Most lefties don’t need an oblique pen. So, what I’m going to do is have you try a loaner lefty oblique pen at the workshop. If you like it and it helps your writing, I’ll be glad to send a left oblique pen to you after the workshop free of charge! If not, you’re all set with the straight pen … which I suspect will be the case.
What Do Previous Workshop Participants Say?
Participant responses to workshops have been overwhelmingly positive! Here are some direct testimonials:
“Who would have thought that in 3 hours I could improve my calligraphy so much? Not me! But I felt overjoyed at my progress. PLUS giving us the “how to write in white” was absolutely invaluable. I had experimented on my own with no luck. And the results are so dramatic that even if my letter formation isn’t great, it still looks terrific! – Jan M.
“Thank you very much for yesterday. I had an absolutely wonderful time. I haven’t picked up a calligraphy pen in over 20 years. The pens I used to use were very different (similar to a marker, but with a special tip). I used to address friend’s wedding invitations, etc. But, the techniques I learned yesterday are amazing. They will allow me, with tons and tons of practice, to be able to create a wide variety of styles. I feel like a complete novice, which isn’t a bad thing. I was always incredibly intimidated by a dip pen, so I stayed away from ever attempting to use one, until now. So, thank you for teaching, sharing, and removing the fear of a dip pen yesterday. It was an invaluable experience.” – Karen G.
“I can’t thank you enough for such a fabulous workshop yesterday… and follow-up goodies that will keep me busy all week! Dip pen calligraphy feels SO much more accessible to me now, and I am so excited to use and build upon the skills I now have :-)” – Karen N.
Where to Sign Up
Here are sign-up links for all the workshops:
- Saturday, June 8th, from 9:30 AM to 12:30 PM
- Sunday, June 9th, from 1:30 PM to 4:30 PM
- Saturday, July 6th, from 1:30 PM to 4:30 PM
- Sunday, July 7th, from 9:30 AM to 12:30 PM
- Saturday, August 10th, from 9:30 AM to 12:30 PM
- Sunday, August 11th, from 1:30 PM to 4:30 PM
Note that if you secure your spot at least one month before each workshop, the workshop cost is $215. In the 30 days leading up to the workshop, the cost will rise to $235. (I do this because the earlier participants sign up, the easier it is for me to organize everything I need to bring to the workshop for you!)
Collaboration with Greenleaf & Blueberry
If you’re interested in watercolors, I want to put Greenleaf & Blueberry’s workshops on your radar! Jess (owner of Greenleaf & Blueberry) and I are switching off teaching workshops on the weekends that I mentioned above. So, if I’m teaching a morning beginner’s calligraphy workshop, for example, she teaches a watercolor workshop that same afternoon! If she teaches a morning watercolor workshop, I teach an afternoon calligraphy workshop.
We did this for a couple of reasons. First of all, we want to offer you an incredible art and creativity-packed weekend if you’re interested in both calligraphy and watercolors! Secondly, it’s convenient for us to share the venue for the day — both financially and logistically. We can help each other design and set up our tablescapes, then at the end of each workshop, we can work together to clean up. In the meantime, our husbands can help each other take care of our little babies, who are almost the exact same age!
Coming in from Out of Town?
While I do see a few locals in my calligraphy workshops, the majority of students travel in order to take them. If you need to travel to get here, let me assure you: you’re going to have an amazing weekend (and I put together the recommendations to make sure of it)! Boulder is juuuuust gorgeous in the spring and summer months! If you do a Saturday workshop, you can catch the farmer’s market (half a block away) before or after your workshop to grab some lunch. If you do a Sunday workshop, you can peruse Pearl Street (two blocks away) for art supplies, artisanal chocolates, and some entertaining street performances! It goes without saying, too, that if you enjoy hiking, you absolutely should work that into your visit!
Don’t let transportation logistics overwhelm you! It’s very easy to get to Boulder from DIA, and lodgings abound! You can check out my tips for transportation, lodging, and things to do in my Suggestions for a Perfect Weekend in Boulder page. If you have any questions, please feel free to email me ([email protected])! I’m passionate about this area and always glad to help you plan an itinerary.
I so appreciate the opportunity to help you learn this amazing skill, and I hope to meet you this spring or summer! I couldn’t be more excited to teach these workshops; just thinking about them makes me happy (and eager for June to get here)! If your presence at one is within the realm of possibility, do consider it, and let me know if you have questions. 🙂