Monday 22 September 2014

Featured on Noor AlQahtani's blog

I was really flattered to be asked by Noor to answer a few questions about my hand-lettering process for an article on her blog. Noor is a graphic designer and web developer, who is also a keen blogger and lover of typography. I've been working on her food blog's header, and I will be working with her on future projects via her Blog Me Pretty shop. Exciting!!

Check out the interview on her blog, or you can have a read through it below.

1. Name:
Carole Chevalier

2. Blog:
My blog is but to see my portfolio, head to

3. How did you get started in hand lettering?
I started to explore hand-lettering when I was studying Art in college, but at this time, I preferred to focus on photography and illustrations. During my years in a Graphic Design school in France, I was pushed to use my hands more than software to create graphical elements and typography, but a lack of confidence was keeping me from embracing it.

I began to get better at hand-lettering when I started my job in a design agency. It felt a lot more natural for me to pick up some brushes and paint, and start to write whatever I needed to or wanted to. With a bit of practice, I started to really enjoy it and decided to do more hand-lettering outside of work for myself and various clients, and well, here I am!

4. What is your process and what tools do you use?
Before starting anything, I would always put together some moodboards in order to know precisely what style the client is looking for. I use the same process for personal projects as it helps me to focus on an idea I want to explore. I use various brushes, depending on how thick and texturised I would like the lettering to be, and some watercolour paint. It's actually the best part of the process as at this point, nothing is stopping you to do and try whatever you want to. So liberating!

How much water you're mixing it with is something really important as it will change the texture and the style of your artwork. I always do variations of the same thing to be able to select the composition I prefer. Once scanned, I would quite often mix words and letters from different variations to create the perfect artwork (and I am quite the perfectionist). I can then amend in Photoshop if I need to, or vectorise it in Illustrator to be able to use it on big formats.

As I have a small Wacom tablet, which I sometimes use in Photoshop as it can be quite handy when you have a particular idea in your head and you need a quicker way to get it down. Once you try it, you won't go back to the mouse!

I have to say that from time to time, I like to use a pencil to create the base of a new typographic project and finish it with a ballpoint pen as it gives such a nice feel to a piece of artwork.

5. Do you have any tips for anyone wanting to get started in this field?
I know that you must hear these type of tips all the time, but actually, some of them are definitely true. I have to say that being confident in yourself and the work you produce is one of the most important things you need to start in this field. It will give you the motivation you need to start from scratch like I did.

Another thing, trust your guts (and your tastes). You know what looks good, and what doesn't. When you try and try again and you feel like you're going nowhere, start again, and you'll know when it's right. I know it can be hard, so I usually ask people to give me their opinion so that it helps me figure out what could be changed or improved.

And really, don't put pressure on yourself, just pick up a brush and some paint, and do whatever comes into your head. It doesn't have to be perfect anyway, so feel free to explore your skills and go for it!

6. Are you taking clients and if so how can they hire you?
I'm always excited to work on new projects, so if you would like to work with me, get in touch to discuss your project. Speak to you soon!

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