From www.calligraphity.com - This is the perfect little book for anyone wishing to understand more about Hebrew Calligraphy as well as those wanting to start creating pieces themselves.
Adapted from the author’s forward
The calligrapher is naturally attracted to beautiful written forms, and a variety of world cultures – including Roman, Asian, Arabic, and Hebrew-offers a gallery without walls. Regardless whether characters can be read, through the gesture and sensitivity of their strokes, shapes, and arrangement they convey esthetic and emotional qualities. They may also evoke rhythmical responses, or engage us in a visual intrigue as, for example, cloud formations in the purely attentive experience of perception.
Hence this book is written for the Western calligrapher, whether or not s/he knows the Hebrew language, who wishes to experience the rich variety of form encoded in the unique and beautiful characters of Hebrew calligraphy. Knowing the names of the letters is very helpful for the student, and so are provided on the page inside the cover. The Hebrew letters are represented by a Sephardi and a stylus-made alphabet. This pairing of the two alphabets demonstrates the essential strokes upon which written edged pen forms are built.
The purpose of revising and expanding Hebrew Calligraphy Styles is to provide alphabet models with more distinct historical character; clearer, more complete instructional material; written texts that illustrate a greater variety of format; and contemporary alphabet designs. While I am highly desirous of helping students understand letterform construction, the historical alphabets have not been designed for their ease of writing, but for their character and beauty. Instructors need not diminish the complexity of letters to simplify instruction – though it is tempting. Even for the beginning student of calligraphy, the best models are not necessarily the simplest, which are made for their logic rather than their character.
Following the four alphabet model pages, which include ductus, I offer a section "Notes on Model Alphabets," which provides detailed instruction on each alphabet's pen angle, scale, and slope, and the construction of its horizontals, verticals, and serifs. The ductus in this section gives the particulars necessary to achieve the forms in the models,
including the special nuances of pen manipulation and pen pressure.
Three alphabets conclude this edition, and were designed for the sheer pleasure of creating them, and to suggest the range of potential expression within the Hebrew alphabet. While these alphabets are not directly informed by historical models, one may detect echoes of them.
Designing an alphabet is a wonderful way to gain greater appreciation of calligraphic alphabets, and to develop one's taste and imagination. Notes on designing alphabets, whether historically influenced models or more personal inventions, are included below.
In addition, there are sections on "Pen & Alphabet Principles" and "Learning Methods" that have been revised. There are also translations of the written texts are provided with this edition so the student may appreciate the graphic interpretation of their content.
2nd edition, 2006, Pb, 24pp, monochrome throughout, 14 x 21.7 cm