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Gods With Snow - By Jove, I'm getting there

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30 December 2006

Gods With Snow - By Jove, I'm getting there

I've been practising verticals. (gee, what a change)

Remembering that I discovered that historical Gothic scripts have even spacing between the verticals - rather than 'kerning' (specific and individual spaces between particular letters) to make the letters more distinct and legible.
I learnt to do it with the modern spacing, so I've been re-learning to write it with even spacing between the verticals, and at the same time improving the quality of my verticals, using the 'Gods of Snow' quote from Drogin's book.

Meisterin Katarina Helene pointed out the other day that only diamonds were being used in this version of G.T.Q. script to make M, N, and U - no quadrants (ie extended diamonds) so I've needed to incorporate this change.

When I went from doing just verticals (I's) to joining them together in M,N and U's just using diamonds, as per the quote, I discovered that they were too close together.
If you look at the scan below, you can see that the diamonds are touching at the bottom all of the time- they should be just slightly apart and only joined in the case of at the bottom in the case of the U by a tiny extending stroke.
I'm used to using quadrants which provides a longer 'bridge' between the verticals.

Anyway, after banging my head on the desk for awhile and wondering if I was ever going to get this right, I tried doing two verticals, and THEN joining them to form an N. And - it worked!

It isn't 'legal' - in the ductus, you do one vertical, then the stroke to join, then the second vertical.
But I reckon I'll keep up doing it this way until I get more of a handle on the spacing.
Because the spacing is SO tiny, it's so very easy to go either too narrow, or too wide.

Here's what I got :

Apart from the fact that it's not scanned straight, and the x-height differs between the line - that looks heaps heaps better! I'm still a bit variable in the spacing between the verticals, but it looks so much more like the original quote! *happy dance*
And yes, that spacing in "volunt" (the final word) is correct - look at the original quote. It's got even spacing between the verticals - so it looks weird. That's the whole point of all of this.
(and going onto letters other than M, N, U and I should be lots of fun! - will I end up perverting the whole ductus?~!)

And - not only have I been talking about the wrong manuscript the whole time (I was wondering if anyone would ever notice), made a fundamental mistake in measuring the x-height, which means that I've had to re-do all my script analysis work so far, .....
but Meisterin Katarina Helene explained Reggie Ezell's answer to me in words of one syllable. And I said it was a fairly generic answer! Let me writhe in embarassment!

By "
My general response to any lettering is not to squeeze letters between the lines. Iusually prefer to pierce through them--more freedom."

He was talking about 'hanging the diamonds' from the waist line. It's a bit of a subtle thing - only to be appreciated if you spend a lot of time staring at the script. It means that the diamonds should only just, just be touching the lines (hanging from the top and floating from the bottom). So I've been working on that as well, with some success.

More practise, to get the spacing even and make sure my diamonds hang nicely. And then have a go at doing the letters in the proper stroke-order. I'm hoping that by getting this quote right, it'll really help me in the future. It'd better! *grin*

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