calligraphy, lettering, type design, letter carving, sign writing, pixel pushing, etc

Laurie Doctor

Sketchbook study: Cursive forms of my "hieroglyphic" alphabet

I wanted to see how to make the singular characters of my hieroglyphic alphabet into cursive form. This is a sketchbook study, writing words quickly in this alphabet with a pointed brush.

Draw Us Near

This text is from Leonard Cohen: "Draw us near, oh bind us tight, all your children here, in our rags of light." Pencil and pointed pen. The smaller writing is only about 1/16" tall, x-height.

May what I do flow from me like a river

The title is from a Rilke poem. This is a page from a book made for an artist in Germany.


White dresses, wing even

Poem from Czeslaw Milosz, "On Angels" written with pointed brush large, and in one of my alphabets with a small broad edged pen.

White dresses, wing even

From my sketchbook: Poem by Czeslaw Milosz, "On Angels". Large lettering with pointed brush, small lettering in one of my alphabets with broad-edged nib.

Why do I flee?

Sketchbook study: From a poem by Marie Howe, "Prayer": "The mystics say you are as close as my own breath.
 Why do I flee from you?" Sumi with pointed brush on rice paper.

Sketchbook study for hieroglyphic alpabet

This sketchbook study was done, on the right page, in the image of the "false door" on the Egyptian tombs.

Sketchbook study for hieroglyphic alpabet II

Another sketchbook study in process for my hieroglyphic alphabet, each character having a sound and an image.

Greek alphabet study

Sketchbook study: copying an old Greek manuscript for development of an alphabet.

Hieroglyphic study with drawn characters

Sketchbook study: Drawn characters and script contrasting dark and light.

Alphabet study with wide pen and pointed pen

Playing with making an alphabet that is chunky, and an old alphabet with pointed pen. This is a detail of a larger study.

Writing with a shell

For years now I have been handing out shells at my classes- a great organic tool to write and draw with. Here is a sketchbook study written with a shell, and on the right hand side I wrote the mirror image.

Landscape and Lettering

I have an ongoing study of how to translate principles of landscape into lettering- writing text as landscape. Here you can see the principles of scale, value and distance. Written with a small pointed brush.