”More and more I see less difference between writing and drawing”
Teacher, type designer and calligrapher Timothy Donaldson found a beer can while on a trip to Iceland which was labelled with one of his own typefaces. Carving it apart last December at Bilston Craft Gallery, he made a nib out of it, using it to create a 10ft long calligraphic text. Combining fat, decisive brushwork with intricately detailed lines and lettering, the calligraphy is densely packed with meaning, drawing on the language of the Black Country and the words and speculations of gallery visitors.
”Anything that big has got some kind of danger about it”
A calligraphic installation at the Devon Guild of Craftsmen incorporated stenciled letters, finely sploshed brushwork and delicate strokes of the pen.
Donaldson regrets the decline of handwriting, long since untaught in schools, and the fall into disuse even of the signature, replaced at the check-out by the chip & pin. His work reclaims the art and spiritual discipline of calligraphy. It speaks for the unity of heart and brush in a world in which hands hide their character behind keystrokes.
Donaldson gave another demonstration on the 19th February this year at the Harley Gallery in Nottinghamshire as part of the Signs for Sounds exhibition. No video is available as yet, but a selection of photographs from the event can be found here.
He is the author of Shapes for Sounds, a scholarly but wonderfully illustrated history of the Latin alphabet. He is also a Senior Lecturer on the BA (Hons) Graphic Design course at University College Falmouth.
Timothy Donaldson is on twitter and can be found at @tmthy_dnldsn