Friday, December 10, 2010

handwriting and poetry

I came across this post by Lisa Holtzman, a Californian calligrapher: . I loved the freedom in the letters and the poetry of this piece. Go and have a look at some fresh contemporary lettering.

Thursday, November 18, 2010


This latest piece of calligraphy must have hurt. It has become a permanent exhibit on my son's arm. The tatoo artist has made a very accurate copy of my work. I hope that once the swelling and bruising has gone down that it looks as my son hoped. It has to be one of the most unusual pieces that I have done.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Looking at the last post

Looking at the last post I realise that as this book of names is shown folded there is no real indication of scale. I don't remember the number of names, but the book laid out flat is around 12 feet long. One reason for using joined sections was to avoid having to rewrite all the names if there was an error too great to erase. The window contained a rainbow and this allowed me to use coloured ribbons to bind the sections.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Another find

While gathering some objects together for a meeting next week I (re)-discovered this. Made around the millenium  it is a book, bound with ribbons, listing the names of those in the parish of Pennard, who donated towards a window in the church.

Monday, September 13, 2010

This post is a piece which was accepted and was part of the CLAS (Calligraphy and Lettering Arts Society) exhibition 'The Art of the Letter' earlier this year. I was pleased that it was accepted and delighted with the comment that accompanied it on its return. As usual I went up to the wire finishing it for the exhibition, but next year I'll devote more time to it.

Friday, July 23, 2010

A Piece for Dwayne Peel

This is a poor photograph of a poem written out to be given to Dwayne Peel at the time he left Wales to play his rugby in England. I am enjoying finding my way round the celtic 'uncial' style at the moment. Saying that, I need a lot more practice. Perhaps a short break from work will allow time for that.

Monday, June 14, 2010


This piece, dated 2003, went missing around July that year, following the exhibition that it was part of. Thinking about it at the weekend, it struck me that this was another reason for using my own words in pieces of calligraphy and lettering. In an earlier post I argued that copyright can be very restictive and getting permission can sometimes prove difficult. This leaves the options of using out of copyright text or one's own words.
I hope that this piece is not changing hands for money anywhere.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

The Inn at Gutter Fawr revisited

While at a wedding in Brynaman on Friday last week I found myself in the Brynaman Rugby Club for the reception. I came apon the George Burrow Lounge and attached to a pillar this piece of writing, unacredited, which records George's stay at the Inn at Gutter Fawr, now the rugby club.

This and the image of the outside of the club taken with a mobile.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Detail from the video

This detail is from the piece shown in the video in my last post. One difficulty with lettering and calligraphy is obtaining copyright for the words that you want to use. Without words there is no work. One solution to the problem is to use your own words or to collaborate with others to create the words. In this work I collaborated with school children, via their teachers, to use the children's experiences of a journey to Italy.

The brown letters are derived from the letters found on standing stones throughout Wales and represent an interpretation of the carved letterforms introduced by the Romans. These letters are irregular and may often contain different forms of the same letter in one line. They represent the struggle by celtic people to reproduce the work of others using unfamiliar signs and their attempts to contain these symbols in a structure with the added problems that the medium of stone carving presented. These letters are often found on stones that also contain Ogham signs, which may have been the more familiar signs to the carvers of these stones.

The principal language used in this work is Welsh, the language used by the children to describe their journey. This is only partially translated as I was not as concerned with the meaning of the work as the aesthetic of the work.

The 'pages' are hung from a wooden support to form a book, but are free to rotate and allow different readings of the text.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

A change of direction

This post serves two ends. It gives me the opportunity to share this video, which predates the postcard images shown so far. Again related to journey, this piece recordsthe journeys of children visiting Italy. The second purpose is to try video within a blogger blog.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

A change of colour

A new look using Blogger in draft. I still need to do some work on customisation, but there it is so far.
Now two more images from the project, but not included in the matrix in the exhibition. These should be the last before a change to the handwritten/lettered bookwork to come.

This would link the postcard of Saron with the postcard of the boot print.

And this from the lagoon around Venice, but the link would have to be longitude and latitude rather than OS map reference.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Out of Sequence

Midday Friday, 
Dear KB, A sharp shower allowed me to stop for a pint in Llangadog. Landlady busy with her bible. We fell out, her being a Methodist. Couldn't finish the bitter - thnakfully rain stopped. 

The text and image are missmatched. The text is tied to Llangadog the image from further along the route to Swansea at Saron. As you will note from the dates this piece of work is old and I am not sure, without further reference, where this image and text fitted into the narrative. The work is complete in this form. My intention from 2007 is realised, at last. - KB
Saturday p.m. 
Dear KB, Arrived Swansea; staying at the Mackworth Arms. Had to press the staff to get my boots repaired in time for Sunday worship. 
Regards GB
Friday p.m. The Inn at Gutter Vawr 
Dear KB, The locals were a bit wary of me at first, but I think I brought them round. Still wet, hope for better tomorrow. 
Regards GB
Friday P.M. 
Dear KB, The night is coming on fast and I am uneasy about the mist pouring down the mountain. Looking forward to some warmth at the Inn. 
Regards GB
10 March 2007
Dear GB, Arrived at the car park just up the road from Tro'r Gwcu. Bumped into Viv and Delyth taking in the view and enjoying the peace. Wind still sharp so no ice creams today.
Regards KB.
10 March 2007.
Dear GB, The cold wind has given me earache. Surprising the number of cars on this mountain road. On to the top, then to the car park. 
Regards KB
10 March 2007.
Dear GB, It is about this point that I wish I had kept up my walking like you have done. Spent too much time reading. Fine day though, wind a little chilly. 
Regards KB
10 March 2007
Dear GB,  Llangadog - weather fine and bright - warm for the time of year. While snapping away I noticed the boulders around the village green. Might prove inconvenient for your chums. 
Regards KB

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Starting Out

Friday a.m.
Dear KB, Starting out from Llandovery. It is about the pleasantist little town in which I have halted in the course of my wanderings. Showers comming on. 
Regards GB.

Try Again

Another reason for using this blog was to learn about blogger as a medium for publishing. To understand how it works. One problem already is the way that posts are published and the difficulty of moving the post around. You may have noticed the blip. Try again.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

This the reason for the title of this blog and domain name. Pictured are me, KB and George Borrow, GB who was a walker and writer from the eighteenth century.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Found in Verona a few years ago. The poster merging into the thing it sets itself against.