Well boys and girls, here we have the next installment, the letter W in graffiti styles! Here is a letter that you would think is as simple as turning the letter M upside down and sometimes that might be true, but somehow usually not. The letter W, you will find, is very worthy of your practice as it will present a challenge that you may not have expected. It’s very easy to lose the character of this letter entirely if you aren’t careful, but done with form and function in mind you will find yourself in charge of a very effective and powerful letter! The trick is keeping your head in the game and not just blowing it off for the next letter in whatever word you are working on. Don’t limit yourself to the standard on this one. Extend the middle to be higher than the two lines on either end, round off one or all three points, incorporate some overlapping. The point is to let yourself go a little while still keeping the form of the letter intact. It’s tough and will require more practice than most of the other letters did, but so very worth the effort. I promise.
Well here it is. The letter “V” in multiple graffiti styles. How hard can it be? It’s two lines that meet at an angle, right? Well you will find that this one is going to require some serious practice to get right! Sometimes the simplest letters are the hardest to put style on without making a mess. In my opinion, its best to stick with the simpler style of it and I usually do. But plenty can be done with it if you work it for awhile!
As always, the rule here is practice. Lots of it. Don’t copy, draw inspiration. There’s a huge difference. Keep in mind that the name of the game is RESPECT and you’ll get none of that showcasing someone else’s artwork as your own!
Hello again! We are so close to the end of this series I can almost taste it! Here we have the last of the vowels in our simple styled graffiti alphabet. I’ll admit to this being one of the tougher letters in the series. Not because it’s hard to draw, but coming up with so many different styles in one sitting for such a simple letter can be very taxing on the brain! The letter U is a very simple and easily defined letter, but it has it’s drawbacks. Where it’s very easy to do convincingly in its most basic form, stylizing it can easily go astray to the point that it looks like other letters in the alphabet. If you put the top parts too close, you have an “O”. Don’t define the bottom properly and you’re looking at a “V”. A little too much freedom with the base of the letter and there’s a “Y”. I’m sure I can add to the list, but these are the most obvious pitfalls in trying to create this letter. If you think about it though, it’s also a blessing because being so close to those other letters makes a consistent style pretty easy to come by. At this point in the series, if you’ve been practicing, elements of your own style should start popping up in your work. The transition from one letter to the next should be easier to come by than when we started this adventure. Whole words can start taking shape and innovation will start to happen as your studies become more frequent and are able to be completed in less time. Keep in mind that I won’t give you wildstyles. I keep these letters simple so that you can have some examples to work from. The rest is an extension of yourself onto these building blocks. I hope by now that you are noticing how much easier this is with practice than you may have originally thought! So practice practice practice! Don’t forget to share this page with your friends and enjoy this installment until I can deliver the next one!
Hello again fellow travellers! Today we have for you the 19th and VERY much awaited installment in our letter studies, the ever popular letter S in graffiti style! I don’t think I have had as many requests for a single letter so far as this one. The funny thing is, it’s probably one of the easiest letters to make! Very simple shapes, very simple structure, the letter S is another of those many favorites that a graffiti writer just LOVES to spend time on. Don’t believe me? Just take notice of how many writers’ tags start with this fine letter! Not much else to say about this one really. The freeform structure and effortless flow of this letter allow it to stand alone from all the rest. So much fun to be had with this one so, like every other letter I’ve shown you so far, practice it like mad until you get something that you can call your own. It is so easy to manipulate this letter while still retaining it’s value and identity that almost anything goes…… almost.
Sorry for the delay, been out and about being an artist! HAHAHHA. Anyway, here we have the eighteenth installment in our graffiti letter studies, the amazing letter R! This is another of my all time favorite letters because it’s so fun to mess with. Very simple when done simply but can be really turned out when tweaked and twisted. It seems to me like most writers I know really get into drawing this letter for the same reasons I do. The most commonly used letters in the alphabet often become signature letters of the artist creating them and this one is no different. Work with it and its unique structure until you have something that is identifiable as your own and no one elses’. Everything else tends to fall into place style-wise once you master these common letters. As with everything, practice is key so keep it simple and keep on practicing!
Bet ya weren’t expecting this one so quick! Oh yes, it’s another one of those perceptively tough letters that really aren’t as tough as they seem once broken down. Letter Q is simply an O with a line sticking out. How hard is that? That little line affords us so very many possibilities and variations that this letter is plenty of fun to work with and can become a big challenge when trying to arrange new styles! It can be made to fit into everything and really can be a game changer for the aspiring graffiti artist. Practice this one, practice it frequently and obsessively. Have lots of fun experimenting but make yourself work for a unique result. Keep in mind that you are pursuing a great tradition in not only graffiti as an art form, but in what is really the LAST vocation that revolves SOLELY around handwritten typography. Even sign painters are using computers these days! Our reputation is in the skills that allow our hands to express our minds to an audience that likely didn’t ask for what we have to share with them but as a majority are finally coming to the point that they recognize it as art. This is where it all begins so practice this, learn how the letters work both alone and together. We are almost at the end of our alphabet and will soon be ready to advance to the next phase of our learning. Enjoy!
Well here we have it. As promised(for once), before the new year, the letter P in simple graffiti style. I will admit to being short on ideas for this one but I was looking at a deadline for a change and the Holidays caught up with me a bit. Still, like before, there are tons of different ways to represent this letter if you just let your imagination run with it. Practice is always the key because it helps to loosen the brain a bit and that only comes with repetition.
By this point in our studies I’d expect you to be putting together words with all of these letters and attempting different compositions and ways to make the letters work together. I keep these things simple for a reason and that reason is to show you structure. Once you have a structure set to habit then the rest really does start to make itself happen. I know some of you are out there shortcutting the game and just plain copying letter by letter. If that’s what works for you then fine, I’m glad to be a part of your learning process. But I will be honest in telling you that until you start practicing shape and structure you won’t get very far in being able to express yourself the way that someone who actually looks deeper than the examples would. So don’t be a slouch, the time you spend doing it the “easy” way can be much better spent doing it thouroughly and actually learning something that will take you beyond the realm of this page! Once I get the gallery going again I’d like to see some of the progress people are making and I’ll gladly answer any questions you may have so keep the emails coming!
Happy New Year!
Well here it is! Another of my all time favourite letters because it can be done in so many different ways! The letter “O” is probably one of the simplest letters in the alphabet. It’s a circle, plain and simple. Drawn as a circle, it looks just fine! But, in case you haven’t noticed, this letter can be based around ANY closed geometric shape. For a graffiti artist this opens so many avenues and so many adaptations that this letter can fit absolutely any style whatsoever. The key to mastering “O” is to really let your imagination go. It’s structure is the non-structure. It works no matter what you do with it! Just remember to keep practicing and do your best to tie this letter in with all the other ones you’ve been working on. This one is so much fun and has so many variations, there is no end to the innovative interpretations you can come up with!
P.S. In case you didn’t catch the last post, Thank you all for your emails and letting me know how close you are following our progress here. I have a lot more in the works for next year. We should be finished with this round of letter studies and we can get into tons more lessons and treatment for all of these fascinating letters! I’ve been talking to a few other writers that have been so kind as to commit themselves to at least one guest post so we have that to look forward to. I’m rebuilding the gallery that had to be closed because it was tied to the forum. The forum, in case you were wondering, has been dropped. I was taking out over 1500 spam accounts every other day or so on there. It just wasn’t worth the trouble anymore.
Anyway, keep the emails coming! I should have the next installment done by New Years!
Well, now we are over the hump! I present to you letter study number 14, otherwise known as the graffiti styled letter “N”! Every single contestant on wheel of fortune can tell you how important this letter is. It is used in so very many words in so very many languages that it is a must learn for anyone who intends to do letters as their vocation! You may find yourself at a loss while seeking to do variations of this one, but once you get the structure down it’s pretty simple. I think the thing that tends to throw everyone is the diagonal line that holds the two prominent pieces together. I can’t promise you that it’s an easy letter to learn, but it is a MUST. I can’t stress that enough. My advice as always is to start out simple and basic then practice it until your hands are sore. After that, take a rest and then practice it some more! I’ve put together just a few examples for you to learn from. They are hardly a representation of all that can be done with this letter, but a good starting point.
Don’t forget to share this page on facebook and twitter and get all your friends in on how to learn this stuff. You’d be amazed how much creativity can be enhanced in a group setting!
Hello again! Yes, I know it’s been awhile but with this letter there are so many interesting way of doing it I went through 15 different sheets before I decided on the one I wanted to post! Introducing the letter M in graffiti style! Yet another one of those sickeningly important letters to learn because it is part of so many words! The variations that can be achieved with this semi-complex structured letter are endless because there is so much to work with so practice and experimentation are essential to make this one of your own. Keep in mind that simplicity is always key when starting a new letter and that this one can easily go from the coolest letter you’ve ever expressed to a menacing blob of ugly in a few strokes of the pencil. It’s very easy to overwork but looks golden when done with the expertize of someone who’s put in the practice to get it right.
I do each of these studies using 4 simple tools that almost anyone has access to. It’s as simple as 1 sheet of paper, a pencil, an eraser and a black flair pen(rollerballs and microns work wonders as well, but I prefer flair). No special tools, no special paper. Just the simplest, most common devices mixed with a little time and effort will get you astonishing results. I remind you of this in order to encourage and to let you know that ANYONE can do this with focus and effort. It won’t happen right away. It’s hardly the ONLY example you should be taking. But it’s attainable. Almost all wildstyles are a simple progression from these simplest styles of lettering but without the fundamentals it’s easy to get “lost at sea” and end up producing something you won’t be proud of later. I strongly encourage anyone that is following this page or learning to draw anything at all to keep your work from now and never throw it away. Put it aside somewhere so that you can dig it up later and see the progress you are making. I still keep my blackbooks from the 80′s and can tell you that every time I open them up I find something I did in the past that will inspire something new to do in the present.
Sorry again for the delay between posts, the next one will come much sooner!