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Fraktur | Calligraphy Retreat

In August 2014, I spent one week in Saint-Anotine-l’Abbaye (France) studying Fraktur calligraphy with Keith and Amanda Adams, two amazing teachers and calligraphers, a real privilege to be with.

We learnt the ductus and basic structure of the script, starting with the minuscule. Then we reviewed a few different variations of gothic scripts. We then, moved to majuscules and we learnt some gothic ornamentation. You’ll see below a couple of exercises with the capital “F” and the words “The Loop”.

We tried different tools to write: bamboo pens, feathers, ruling pens, brushes on fabric and flexible pens made by beer cans.

Special thanks goes to Keith & Amanda Adams for sharing their incredible knowledge and personal time with us, it has been an honour.

Starting with Gothic ornamentation.

Piece dedicated to The Loop for their support through out the year.

My final project is inspired by the Gothic alphabet of Marie de Bourgogne, around 1480, taken from Fantastic Alphabets (L’Aventurine, Paris, 1995).

The content of the project is a section of the introduction of the book Design Cult. 25 Essays on Graphic Design Culture by Steven Heller. Published by Design File, 2014. Below you can read the content in use:

Design is both cult and culture. On the one hand, designers, and particularly graphic designers, are a tribe of little understood yet much needed artists and artisans with their own rituals, lore and language. They also worship the same design gods (of which there are a few). On the other hand, designers routinely produce objects so essential to everyday life that some of what they make become cultural icons and iconography.