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The Circle Expands

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Carl Rohrs: The Circle Expands - Eclectic Inspiration and Modern Calligraphy

    Large folded brass pen, 5/16" or 3/8" Horizon or similar plus any other pens you already have; flat brush, 1/2" W&N 995, and a Pentel Color Brush plus any other brushes you want to try or already have - W/N Series 7 or similar, Asian, Lebenzon, etc. (N27, BR01, FP57, BR28, BR38)
  • Optional tool: any kind of ruling pen. (N208, N155, N22, N30)
  • Media: Non-waterproof ink (Higgins Eternal, Higgins Sepia, Noodlers, Private Reserve, Walnut, etc.; a tube or two of gouache. (I08, I121, I123, I53-2.5)
  • Large paper with a bit of texture, (Strathmore series 300 Charcoal pad is good). (P51, P71)
  • Graphic white out (Pro-White) &/or light or bright colours of gouache and coloured paper, if you wish to write in reverse. (I62)
  • Canson Ingres or other laid surface charcoal suggested (construction paper not recommended) (PS05)
  • Pencil and/or coloured pencils (Prismacolors are the best) and ruler. (PL38, PL05, S271)

Recommended Books:
These books are great resources, but none are specific recommendations for this class. "All are great books."-Carl
  • B2982. John Stevens SCRIBE: Artist of the Written Word.
  • B3870. Take Your Pleasure Seriously by Luca Barcellona.
  • B3880. Adventures with Letters: A Memoir by Michael Harvey.
  • B1000. Schriftkunst/LetterArt :KarlgeorgHoefer.
  • Ray Daboll: Disciplined Freedom Poster.
  • B3796. What Our Lettering Needs by Rick Cusick.
  • B3435. About More Alphabets by Jerry Kelly with a foreword by Robert Bringhurst.
  • Rudolf Koch by Gerald Cinamon. Out-of-print.
  • Letter Arts Review Issue 13.3 has a well-illustrated article on Koch. Out of print
  • Calligraphic Bookplates and Monograms by Villu Toots.
  • Classic Book Jackets: The Design Legacy of George Salter by Milton Glaser and Thomas Hansen.
  • Hermann Killian: Scripturen. Out of print
  • Schriftgraphik. Herman Killian. Out of print
By or about Carl Rohrs:
  • BL9.4. "Carl Rohrs: Workshop Words."Article in a Bound & Lettered issue that presents Carl's thoughts and lettering.
  • LR21-4. Carl Rohrs. A copiously illustrated 12-page article by Christine Colasurdo in a Letter Arts Review issue.
  • BL15.3. "The Journals of Nancy Hays Hills" by Carl Rohrs in Bound & Lettered Vol.15, No.3.
  • LR31-3. "Opening the Toolbox" contribution by Carl Rohrs in Letter Arts Review Vol.31, No.3.
  • BL16.2. "Julie Gray" by Carl Rohrs in Bound & Lettered. Vol.16, No.2.

  • 19REN. PREORDER for Rendez-vous
    19REN. Preorder for Rendez-vous 2019.

    Add this product to RENDEZ-VOUS 2019 preorders for no shipping charges and pick-up at the onsite JNB store at the conference.

    You must place your preorder by June 12, 2019.

    Your Price

    N27. Automatic Pen
    N27. Automatic Pen.
    Sizes: 1 (1/16"), 2 (1/8"), 3 (3/16"), 3A (1/4"), 4 (5/16"), 4A (3/8), 5 (1/2"), 6 (3/4"), 6A (1").

    These poster pens are made of a non-rust nickel silver with a plastic handle. They produce very thin thins. Use them with the tooth blade uppermost. Clean with warm water after use. A new pen should be filled and worked gently on paper
    until the color (ink) flows. Any possible sign of scratching will soon wear off with use.

    Click here for a how-to information sheet.

    Your Price

    BR01. W&N 995 Chisel Lettering Brush
    Chisel Edged Lettering Brush

    The standard brush recommended by John Stevens, Carl Rohrs and other instructors for chisel-edged alphabets. Golden nylon flat watercolor brush with seamless nickel ferrules and clear plastic handle. Durable and responsive.
    Winsor and Newton Series 995 flat watercolor brush.

    Choose from three sizes:


    Change size selector to see sale prices.

    Your Price $20.29

    FP57. Pentel Color Brush
    Pentel Art Brush

    Much sought after. For brush lettering. Medium. Specify color: Light Green, Turquoise, Olive Green, Pale Orange, Steel Blue, Gray, Orange, Sepia, Purple, Black, Red, Blue, Green, Yellow, Brown, Pink, Sky Blue, Yellow-Orange.

    FP 57. Pentel Color Brush color chart

    Your Price $8.75

    BR28. W&N Series #7 Watercolor Brush
    Series 7 fulfills the essential qualities that define the finest watercolor brush for artists: Point: The brush comes to a crisp point which is maintained during use. Snap & Spring: The brush snaps crisply back into shape with the right degree of spring to allow the artist superior control between the brush and painting surface. Flow Control: The color flows evenly and consistently from the point, with enough color carrying capacity in the belly of the brush to allow flowing gestural strokes. For artists who appreciate exquisite quality and longevity, there is no other brush than the Series 7. Today, just as in 1866, the Series 7 is made for those who understand that the quality of the brush will be reflected in the quality of their work.


    Your Price $18.99

    BR38. WN Artists' Watercolor Sable
    WN Artists' Watercolor Sable Round

    Excellent for fine detail, lines and washes. The round-bellied watercolor brush is the most popular watercolor brush. Quality Kolinsky sable hair, birchwood handles and seamless nickel ferrules all put together by hand to create a truly excellent brush. Has been improved to ensure a perfect point. Matte finish handle.

    Recommended by Valerie Weilmuenster for illuminated letters as a good and ess expensive alternative to the Winsor & Newton Series 7.

    **To see the price of each size, select the size in the box below**

    Your Price $10.99

    N208. Dreaming Dogs Ruling Pen
    N208. Dreaming Dogs Ruling Pen.

    Dreaming Dogs ruling pens are designed with the traditional components of the tools already found on the market, with additional new features.

    The lightness of the tool and its balance were prioritized, resulting in a comfortable grip and allowing for both fluid and gestural strokes.

    Dreaming Dogs ruling pens are crafted in stainless steel with elastic properties, a material that has excellent strength and durability and that does not rust. It is easy to clean and provides lightness, flexibility and accuracy in strokes.

    The wooden pen handles are handmade. The assembly of these pens is entirely manual, with the refinement and finishing done one by one to get the perfect fit. Varnish layers waterproof the handle and make the pens more durable and easier to clean.

    Aldus 2
    Layla 4
    Leeloo 5
    Little Lie 3
    Lollipop 6
    Sofie 1

    Your Price $57.50

    N155. Luthis Pens
    N155. Luthis Pens.

    Folded metal pens for expressive writing and formal calligraphy. The tips are aluminum; the handles are unfinished wood. Approximately 6" long. Four styles are offered; each writes differently. The pens are from Argentina; they are labeled with their Spanish names.

    "They give great edges and hairlines and flow beautifully. For as thin an edge as it has, it's amazingly stable. And the thin handle makes manipulation easy. I can recommend them highly." - Carrie Imai

    Butterfly (Mariposa). Has two writing edges.
    Moth (Polillita). A smaller version of Butterfly (Mariposa).
    Fan (Abanico). The writing edge curve is similar to a standard folded pen or calligraphy ruling pen.
    Dragonfly (Libélula). The writing edge has a unique curve that allows you to change writing styles quickly. Carol DuBosch's favorite of the four.

    Purchase all four and save: use code N155-S4.

    Click here to see sample writing of the Libelula

    Click here to see sample writing with the Mariposa.

    We have added a new, larger pen:
    Moth XXL (Polilla XXL). This is a larger version of the Moth.

    Click here to see sample writing with the Polilla XXL.

    Click here to see more sample writing with the Polilla XXL.

    Your Price $16.95

    N22. Ruling Pen
    N22. Ruling Pen.

    Julian Waters, Gottfried Pott, and many others are using ruling pens to produce expressive letters. This calligraphy ruling pen is designed specifically for lettering. You vary the line width by tilting the pen. Wood handle with brass collar & writing unit.

    Your Price

    N30. Folded Ruling Pen
    Folded Ruling Pen

    Introduced at Letterforum in 1995, this innovative lettering tool has been popular ever since. Use it to produce tight "brush lettering" with a pen or for wild, fun, expressive lettering. These are the originals made by Matthew Coffin and highly praised by Carl Rohrs and Peter Thornton as superior to others that are available.

    Peter Thornton has his students use our Polishing Paper (S107) to lightly abrade the outer and inner surfaces of the Folded Pen. This allows the ink to spread out on the pen instead of beading up.

    Your Price

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