Get inspired to try hand lettering by Brisbane artist and calligrapher, Charlotte Chan (@pixiedust.calligraphy). From teaching lettering classes to creating ornate agate placeholders, she’s got loads of unique calligraphy designs. Learn more about her favourite mediums and advice for beginners below!
What’s an art medium that you love and one that is more of a challenge?
I am a calligrapher, so I use ink a lot. I love just black ink, that’s the very basic form of calligraphy. I love exploring different mediums, like watercolour and acrylic, since they have a lot of colour choices. A challenge would be acrylic ink since it would damage the nib faster than the other mediums.
What’s something you were nervous about starting, that turned out amazing?
Must be agate place cards!!! Agate is smooth after polishing, so it’s hard for ink to slide on and stay on, but with multiple attempts, trials, and errors, it’s finally become one of my best sellers of all time.
What would you tell your younger self?
Just do it, don’t be intimidated. And be confident in yourself, put out into the world what you want to be creating! It’s only if you put it out and do the test ride, that people will add value and social proof to your idea. Reach out to them. If you don’t ask the question, there is no way you can know if somebody might say yes. You will learn a lot from getting out there, so don’t be scared to just start – nothing is permanent! Just do it!
How about growing up, did you come from a creative family yourself?
I come from a basic Asian family, haha – my parents would like us to either be a doctor or a lawyer. But well, something calls inside me, so I have to listen to myself. But mum has always been a creative soul as she sews, makes silk scarfs, paints, and draws.
What’s your favourite time of day?
My favourite time of the day is anytime really! Since I am my accountant, the marketing team, the design team, and procurement…most of the time when I am not with my kid, I am basically occupied, which I enjoy. And I love the feeling of having a to-do list with the self-satisfaction and fulfilment of ticking items off.
Where do you feel most inspired to create?
Travel is the core of my creative process. And I am not the only one. Travel broadens my horizons by introducing me to diverse practices, materials, methods, techniques, and cultures. It's a gateway to understanding different worldviews and how they shape creativity, enriching your own artistic journey.
What are your tips for improving at calligraphy?
First, get the right tools, then practice, practice, practice. It will get there one day, slowly but surely. Come to my workshop (in Brisbane) or my online course to start with.
Hopefully, you have a go at channeling Charlotte’s creative spirit and try calligraphy at home or at her workshop. She has taught us that it’s well worth diving into creating with confidence – learning while you go is all part of the journey.
See more about @pixiedust.calligraphy by checking out our gallery, where her art journey is featured! Stock up on hand lettering supplies by exploring our ink and calligraphy collections. If you feel inspired to explore ink, #montmarteart or tag us @montmarteart on Instagram or Facebook. We’d love to see what you make!
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