Where Words Fail Music Speaks

This is a little piece I threw together this week. When I say little, I mean it! It’s pretty small. The x height is about 5mm, which for calligraphy isn’t so tiny, but compared to the lettering pieces I usually do, it’s quite small.

Where Words Fail Music Speaks

What I was aiming for with this piece was to go for a relatively simple calligraphic style and try to capture the feeling that I’ve seen in lots of progress pictures of lettering pieces that seems to get lost in the final piece. During the design stages the letters are often sketched out, and perhaps filled in lightly with pencil, but usually have darker outlines. Once the piece is inked, the feel of the letters and the overall impression of the piece becomes very different. Having the outline stand out somehow makes the piece feel a lot more spacious and delicate.

This piece is in fact a quote from Hans Christian Andersen. Being a musician and an awkward English person, I often feel that words can fall short whereas music is something that provides a different kind of connection between people. I saw the quote and decided that it would make a nice piece in a calligraphic style. Compositionally it suits a piece that is all in the same style rather than a grand, type-mixing poster. The message itself is about the inadequacy of words, and yet the message is in words itself, so it also suits a relatively understated style.

Recently, I’ve been digitizing more pieces (some to come in a few weeks, too,) so I thought I would quickly throw this piece through the digital assembly line to add a splash of colour. I have a few coloured inks, so I should quite like to add some colour to the physical piece, but the colours didn’t really match up with composition, so I will have to wait until I get some other colours. Here’s the digital version:

Where Words Fail Music Speaks 2


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