with Yves Leterme

This class exclusively focuses on capitals, more precisely the wealth of capitals that are at our disposal when we decide to draw or build up our letters rather than to write them.

That wealth is literally infinite, so we have to limit ourselves. Like in the gestural class, it’s not as much my aim to acquaint you with a handful of alphabets but rather to show you how you can make your own variations.

We start from scratch with a basic skeleton alphabet in pencil and step by step we blow life into our letters, making them more dynamic. We learn how to build up our strokes subtly, how to bring in elegance within the letterforms, how to be precise and consistent in style... Our tool will be the humble pencil at first, but we’ll switch to a fineliner and later on to a nib as well.


Once we’re equipped with that basic knowledge and skill, we can start exploring.  Size, slope, proportions, rhythm, quality of line, serifs and endings, weight… all these variables can be modified to our liking in order to create highly unique letters and scripts.  Also here, we build up skill and experience with a pencil and then, once emboldened, we take up a fineliner or a nib and towards the end of the class even a flat brush to translate what we learned into something more powerful, colorful and permanent.

This class is not only about individual letters and its many variations, but since we’re going to use them in texts, we’ll also discuss rhythm, movement, consistency and layout.

The course is open to all levels. You don’t need to have years of experience or even a foundation in formal calligraphy, but, needless to say, it wouldn’t hurt if you have all that under your belt. Like with my other online courses, I aim to serve to a wide variety of levels. When students are prepared to spend time and energy on it, each one can make considerable progress. 


Here are a few things that will be covered in the course



  • setting up (supplies, how to practice…)
  • going letter by letter over a basic skeleton alphabet
  • making changes to size, slope and weight
  • changing rhythms
  • using pencils, pen and brush to form our letters
  • color changes
  • harmony and contrast
  • proper spacing
  • fitting it all together

If you have previously taken the Built-up Capitals course,
please click here for a special offer. 







This class runs 7 weeks with very individualized attention and correction to each student’s work.

Registration opens Jan. 9, 2021


The class comes with 6 extra months of viewing time.




The Details


Classes will run for 6 MONDAYS  in February/March, 2021 beginning February 8th.

Feb. 8: lesson 1
Feb. 15: lesson 2
Feb. 22: lesson 3
March 1: lesson 4
(an extra catch-up week, with critiques still offered)
March 15: lesson 5
March 22: lesson 6

New lessons (instructional videos and handouts) are posted each Monday, but you do NOT need to be online at that time. All the videos can be watched at whatever time is convenient for you and as many times as you like. The videos will remain up for an additional six months after the last class in case make-up time is needed for viewing! There is homework suggested for this class, but not mandatory.  The Classroom Forum provides a wonderful place to share your designs with the other students and to learn from the critique on each other’s work.



Can't make it this time? Not to worry! We'll make sure to let you know when this class is offered in the future. 

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