June 2002 - Issue 14

Welcome to all the new subscribers!

Happy June, everybody!

Summer is drawing near, although some days you wouldn't know it! I left Calgary the morning of May 15 and it *snowed* that morning... (not a lot, but it still snowed!)

As some of you will know, my mantra over the last month has become Why travel lightly when you can make a statement? Well, we had lots of stuff to share, didn't we? I *think* I came home lighter than when I left....

I'd like to take this opportunity to thank all the students that I have had the pleasure of teaching recently in Calgary, Kelowna and Vancouver. And an extra special thanks to the workshop coordinators and hostesses who made my stay and teaching experience really special. I've been so lucky to be invited to teach and I've loved every minute of it (except perhaps having the first leg of my flight to Kelowna being canceled and I being forced - see me suffer - not!- to stay in the Delta Airport Inn in Vancouver. I did arrive the morning of the workshop with an hour to spare...).

I hope we can all get to play together again some day!

You may be wondering why this newsletter is so late. I think I have a fairly good excuse....

As you can see, other than Mich trying to draw Mommy sprawled on the couch, there is not much on this delightful (bloody heavy, nasty, uncomfortable, itchy, annoying, etc) cast. Please feel free to send me bits to glue on it...

Oh, well, as least this event is fodder for the journal.... And how did I perform this daring feat? Off the unmarked step in front of the post office. My heel caught the step and I rolled off. Heard the crack... When help came and they were rolling me to the ambulance, I asked for a paper bag. I think the attendant thought I was going to be sick, but I assured her it was just to put over my head so that no one would recognize me....

As a consequence of the above adventure in my life, you may find this issue a bit leaner than usual. My apologies. I can't sit at the computer for too long yet. But I hope there is something in here that you will enjoy!

Don't forget to check out the recently updated
Class Photos page
to see if your smiling face made it onto the www!

Click here to see current offerings of Quietfire Rubber Stamps!

Here is a new stamp for June! (there were suppose to be more - ahem....)

My links page

It is customary, when someone puts a link to your website on their website, for you to reciprocate. I have been somewhat remiss in this, and have been meaning to make a links page for some time... In the meantime, I would like to acknowledge these two sites, both are amazing resources and I congratulate both ladies on jobs well done!

  • CYNSCRIBE Calligraphy Compilation/Directory is a resource for calligraphers,lettering artists, papermakers, typographers, graphic designers, paper decorators, scrapbookers, rubberstampers, greeting card makers,book designers and artist bookmakers. It also includes suppliers, conferences, exhibitions & events, galleries, guilds, libraries, museums, and schools.
  • Cat Lady Crafts carries beads, charms, tag supplies, as well as gift items. If you go to her links page it will open up a huge world that you are easily lost in! and if you're a cat lover, this stop's for you.


Welcome to issue14 of byhand! If you wish to check back issues of byhand click here.

If you wish to contact me, my email address is: suzanne@quietfiredesign.com

To subscribe: send me an email saying 'subscribe'!
To unsubscribe: send me an email saying 'unsubscribe'. I'll live....
To change your email address: send me an email with both your new and old address. Thanks!

Please feel free to browse through my website Quietfire Design. There is now a link from my website to this newsletter, but I suggest that you bookmark the index page of this newsletter, so you can return here at any time.

I have added a printable general supply list for bookbinding classes to my website.
Click here to see it!

(The back click will take you to the Classes page!- sorry - use your browser back to return here)

I just had to include this enthusiastic note from Elizabeth who won the April draw for a rubber grab bag and a starter kit of acrylic mounts.

WOW! Thank you so much for the great prize. I love the rubber and I love the acrylic blocks. I have been wanting to try the cling vinyl technique. I am currently using the velcro method. Thanks again both of you.

You're welcome, Lizard!

Although the draw is over, you might want to see one late addition, which, between USPS and Canada Post, unfortunately arrived too late to be considered... Scroll down to see Lenna's gorgeous postcard. It's certainly worth re-visiting the page to see all of this wonderful collection.

Please Click here to go to
Subscriber's Gallery Page
to view the entries for this draw!

Artist's Journal Correction

Over the past several months, my handout's for the Artist's Journal have included the URL to get your daily creative prompt from Creative Journal. I have had students cross this out as it was no longer available, but I am please to pass on the information that this opportunity is once again available!


Gentle Thoughts

This piece of lettering is dedicated to my tutor, Fred Salmon. It is Fred's eightieth birthday this month and he complains he no longer has an interest in lettering, but if you get him on the subject, he will certainly talk about it! And if you tell him I wrote this article in my newsletter, he will surely be cross with me. So "mums the word"!
I began studying with Fred in the early to mid-1980's, before husband and children, when I had lots of free time and energy, and it's a good thing I did it then, because I'm not sure I could find the time and dedication now! I took pretty much everything he was willing to teach.

Fred has done many interesting things, but it takes a while to get it out of him. He was in the greeting card business for many years - even worked in New York City on Madison Avenue. He really did not do any traditional formal calligraphy until he moved to Victoria 20-odd years ago. But he had such a fantastic background and eye for detail that he could do incredible things quickly. He found a passion for the study of Roman Capitals and has them painted in a border all around his living room! Everytime I visit him I try to remember to visit his Roman Caps! (- everyone automatically makes a bee-line for his studio when they visit.)

It is from Fred that I have learned to make the best letters that I can. He has tried to teach me subtlties that I could not see. Crisp, clear, legible letters with no "hotdogging" (or flourishing as most would say). He believes that lettering is a traditional craft (as silversmithing is a craft). Now, when I pick up a pen the best letter does not always come out, and I love hotdogging, but I don't tell him!

I have had workshops with many, many excellent calligraphers during my calligraphic journey, but when I am sitting at the drafting table and lettering something, it is Fred's voice I hear saying,
"...well, I don't know, Suzanne...." and it's time to fix or redo things! He seldom pats me on the back for work I've done. But that's not his job. His job is to make me the best calligrapher I can be. And there will always be more room for that!

Fred also challenges me to be the best person I can be, as he has great social conscience - but that is another story...

Our infrequent visits are now the visits of friends who enjoy one another's company. Fred has a fabulous dry sense of humour and he, almost without fail, has me roaring with laughter over something or other each time I visit.

I am so lucky to know him.



To celebrate Fred's 80th birthday, Vivienne (who gave me the Japanese proverb I lettered for Fred - thanks Vivienne!) and Pat from the Fairbank Calligraphy Society in Victoria, B.C. suggested Fred's calligraphic friends could decorate tags of celebration. This was my contribution along with the tags of about 50 others.

Their plan was to make a mobile, but the final creation was a small Arbutus tree dug from Pat's property festooned with all the tags. Bravo, ladies!

Alphabet Tag Swap

Here is some more offerings from our alphabet tag swap. If you'd like to know more about the swap,
click here to read what we did!

  Karin Fung

My tag, let see if I can recall how they were done. I think they were pretty simple but time consuming. I had a difficult time trying to come up with something as you recall. Basically I used stamps to create my tags.
1) Sponge painted them on both sides with 3 different colours
2) stamped them with a moon and then embossed them in silver.
3) stamped the Martians on a separately and glued them in various position and glued their eyes for "special effect" and I believe they are reading a book about Martians
4) Stamped vines for the martians to hide in and randomly hand coloured some of the leaves.
5) On the back, again I used the "M" stamp in the short message. (The Ladybug is part of my signature.) That's it!! (that I can recall from memory)


Marilyn Smitshoek

As for how I did my first one, well I had the letter 'L" and since I was also planning my Valentine's cards at the time, I decided to go with the theme of "love." So I started looking around and found stamps and stencils and various materials and ideas, in fact too many. I was trying to include everything and it was just too much. So as the deadline drew near, I realised I had to simplify my ideas. I had been searching for a stamp of a letter 'l' and finally found one. Even though it was not quite what I wanted (it rather looks like a backwards 'j'. I decided to go with it. I also really wanted to use the stamp of the man and woman, but they didn't really fit a standard tag, even when I cropped them, so I made my own. I dyed them with cranberry tea and then played around with assembling all the bits. I used a brass stencil for the word love, gave the whole thing a deckle edge and spray painted some gold hearts I had (I had just enough to do the project and finally came up with a layout I was happy with. I decorated both sides just because I had so many ideas I wanted to use. Well, that is a rather long winded explanation, but that was the process.
(editor's note: the gold hearts were made of wood!)


Kathy Guthrie

I must admit, I had a little trouble getting started on this assignment. My work usually has a lot of "white space" around it and there isn't much room on the tag to do that! However, I did finally come up with a design I was pleased with. The tags were provided by Suzanne (thanks!) and the background was done by stamping the ink pad, ColorBox Metalextra CopperSwift, onto the tag in all directions on both sides. The front of the tag is decorated with torn recycled music sheets purchased at one of our favourite second hand shops: Beacon Books in Sidney, and a torn piece of black Stonehenge paper. The "j" was done with Bright Gold Acrylic Artist Color by Liquitex that I put in a plastic squeeze bottle that has a nozzle top (purchased at Opus). The dot on the "j" was done with a pointed brush and Red Oxide Acrylic Artist Color. "Jouer", which means "to play" in French, was written with a colored pencil crayon; the color is long forgotten! I don't collect much in the way of fancy ribbons or yarns so I ended up using a narrow shiny gold cord for the tie which I frayed at the ends. Since I am used to reproducing my card designs in quantity, 17 tags was not a big problem and I'm looking forward to the next exchange.


May Challenge


Just to recap - here was the challenge!
I know a lot of you keep journals and sketchbooks, and some of you take them with you when you leave the house. I'd like to hear what art supplies you take with you when you go out!

This is a wonderful set of lists with some superb ideas for a Studio-to-go. Just remember, if you are flying anywhere, pack you scissors and exacto, and maybe even bone folder (and nailclippers) in your luggage!
Thanks to everyone who sent in their lists!

i just got a small tin lunchbox, just the right size to carry*
1/2 gel pens
peerless water colour papers
small journal
1/2 ruler/6 "
small rubber mat board
xacto knife
tiny hole punch
tube of glue
and lots of hope to make goodies along the road

Alanna Miller
 Hi Suzanne... I do take my journal with me and my supply list depends on my current interest.
When I went away last weekend with the journal group I took the insert from the FUN edition of Oprah, a stack of magazines, glue stick, sissors, paper, and felt pens and coloured pencils. I also took supplies to make little books (the lovely ones with pockets)--everyone enjoyed them! (so thank you!!) For decorating the outside I had a lot of decorative buttons that I bought on sale at Michaels as well as some beads.

Kathy Guthrie:
mechanical pencils - both graphite and coloured, scissors, UHU glue stick, small palate of watercolours by Yarka, fold up water jar made from recycled Sunlight dish soap collapsable container, a couple of pointed and flat brushes, a few paper towels, black Uniball Vision Micro pen, Zig colored markers, Pental Color Brush pen, one Petal Point stamp pad or Option pad, a few of my own hand carved little stamps, quotations that I already keep in my wallet or sketchbook, my own decorated paper scraps I've collected in little packets, snipits of ribbon, cords, etc. I've collected in packets, recylced postage stamps, a few pressed flowers ... The list grows if I'm travelling and I end up collecting "stuff" along the way.

Nadine Fenton
My list of art supplies for travel depends on how long i will be away. If someone else would carry it, i'd bring more things with me.
Must Haves: One soft bound journal, at least 8 x 10 inches. pencil crayons markers of different types
Camera ! For a longer trip (more than a weekend) ... i bring a larger assortment of pencil crayons, and probably a second journal - something i can carry with me at all times. I carry my pencil crayons in Ziplock bags. when possible, i bring jewellery supplies.... metal, some crochet hooks and scissors ! Nadine in montreal.
This list came from CST (Canadian Stamp Talk) yahoo group which came from a US group which came from.... well, you get the idea! and I though I'd include it here!
Basic Stamp Kit:
craft knife
cutting mat
steel edge ruler
C-Thru ruler (with all the railroad track lines...has a metal edging, too)
colored pencils with small sharpener pencil blender
double sided foam tape
glue stick
small personal trimmer (like Fiskars)
Gold Krylon pen
water brush
Dove/Tombow blender
black fine point Sharpie
black dye ink (Document, Ancient Page Coal, Memories)
bone folder
small notebook
For traveling include a paper punch (1/8 inch), a small stamp positioner, a kneaded eraser, an emery board/shrink plastic sander (for sanding rough edges), and a camera.

And here is my list of supplies
∑ your journal
∑ a pencil (perhaps a mechanical one so you don't have to worry about sharpening it!)
∑ your favourite writing tool
∑ an eraser
∑ a small pair of scissors
∑ a gluestick
∑ some coloured pencils or felts (be aware that felts will smear if wet)
∑ some calligraphy markers if you're calligraphically inclined

for longer or more serious excursions, you might want to pack:
∑ a small travel watercolour kit and brush
∑ a small waterproof container for carrying water
∑ some watercolour postcards
∑ a bone folder
∑ an exacto knife with cover
∑ a tack for punching holes
∑ a sewing kit for stitching who knows what into your journal

I had said I would put the names of those who send me their list into a hat and draw for a little prize when I publish byhand in June!

And the winner of this draw is: Nadine!!
(Congratulations, Nadine - I hope you're not in any rush for your prize..... the cast doesn't come off till Independence Day - how appropriate!)

Thanks again for sharing your Studio-to-Go lists!

I was rather amused to have an article in my mailbox several weeks ago from the Daniel Smith monthly newsletter which was quite topical. This gentleman is an oil painter, but there a few interesting things we can all learn from. Here is a portion of it...

Plein Air Painting - Join the revival of "open air" painting.
by Bruce Peil Bruce Peil en plein air.

"French in origin, plein air means "open air" and dates back to the 1890s with the emergence of the Impressionists. Their suggestive strokes lent themselves to landscape and outdoor scenes. Coincidentally, this is the same time paints became available in tubes, an easy way to move the studio outdoors. Plein air is currently enjoying a revival, and there are as many approaches to outdoor painting as there are people practicing it. I have two reasons to paint plein air. First, this is where I find the truth about my subject. I want a sense of place in my paintings, and I believe painting the color and value relationships of the actual objects are essential to that end. I am most excited about capturing natural colors....I never photograph the scene I am going to paint. My focus improves when I know I won't have a photo as reference back in the studio; after a day or so, I look at the field study with a fresh eye and finish it from memory.
     The equipment I use is straightforward. A pochade box on a wide spreading

tripod for stability in the wind, and a bag that carries paper towels, panels, thinner, sun block, and as every plein air painter finds out sooner or later: Don't forget the bug spray! If I can't carry it in two hands, I've got too much stuff. On an extended painting trip away from home, I'll have extra supplies in the car. I also use a simplified paletteóless tubes of paint mean less weightóconsisting of ultramarine blue, cerulean blue, alizarin crimson, cadmium red light, cadmium yellow medium, cadmium yellow pale or lemon, and viridian. I use the same colors in the studio as on location, no matter what the subject matter. My advice is to pack light, paint small and paint what you see, not what you think you know.

Plein air painting can be as difficult or as enjoyable and rewarding as you make it. It isn't easy to stand in front of multitudes of information, grandeur if you like, and organize it into a painting. What to put in, what to leave out? So much chaos, so little time."

Another article on the Daniel Smith website you may want to check out is Packing to Paint.

Studio Tips

Since we are on the topic this month of Studio-to-Go, I thought I'd add this special little gem to the list of possibilities - that is if you can find one. Jacquie in Kelowna pulled this out of her workshop supplies when we were doing Artist's Journal. She thinks she purchased it in a children's store, but isn't sure! To make it work, you pull the lead out of the tip of the pencil and push out the colour in the barrel of the next lead that you plan to use! Pretty compact, eh?

I'd be delighted to receive your favourite tips for inclusion here - we can all learn from them and probably save someone - like me - frustrations!


For those of you who have taken the Coptic Stitched Class, you may still acquire waxed linen thread from me. It is $0.50/yard Cdn ($0.30/yard U.S. funds plus $2 for postage).
If you send me a SASE* with your cheque (made out to me Suzanne Cannon) that makes life a lot easier for both of us! Please email me before to check for availability. Thanks!

Here is a list of the colours I currently have in stock:

walnut brown black
olive drab maroon
dark forest green rust
Victorian rose plum
navy blue sage

It takes two yards of thread to complete the book as we made it.

* 2 Canadian $.48 stamps to Quietfire Design, Box 1231, Port Alberni, B.C. V9Y 7M1 Canada

Don't Forget!

will run September 13-15, 2002, in Richmond, B.C., featuring artists like Nina Bagley, Karen Michel, Claudine Hellmuth and Mary Jo McGraw just to name a few. Registration is continuing.
For more information about ARTwerx, click on the logo above to go to the website.

I'd just like to say that if you're an American subscriber, the exchange with the Canadian dollar makes this a very worthwhile event!

I have put together some sewing cradles for sale as some of you have been asking for them. They are not things of great beauty, but really, really handy for when you have a lot of holes to pierce. They are large enough for an 8.5" spine length and are $20Cdn (or $15US - to the States) shipping included. Email me if you can't live without one! I will try to bring these to classes so you can see them in person!

As well as the waxed linen, I now have some brass corners (the 3rd one down is Nickel or silver coloured) which are 50 cents Canadian (or U$0.35) each. They fit nicely on a bookboard of about 1.0mm thickness covered with decorative paper. Email me if you are interested - I don't think shipping will be too much, but that depends on the quantity!

brace yourselves...

History Lesson

Here is the second installment of the information panels from my exhibition.... At least it's short!

(pronounced un-see-als)

Psalterium Romanus cum canticis - English 8th Century

The Uncial hand developed around the 3rd century and was in common use through the 8th century. It continues the Roman tradition, being a majuscule script (all capitals) and was used until the ninth century or so, but can be seen in manuscripts far newer. The letterforms can be characterised as round, employing a 20 degree pen angle or lower and between 4 and 6 pen widths letter height. It is an excellent hand for a beginner, as there is only one set of forms to learn, the majuscules. The hand can appear quite different depending on the part of the world in which they were penned, and some do not translate nicely into a modern hand. It is a book hand, perfect for long passages.


Teaching Schedule
Spring, Summer & Fall!

To get more details go to my website Calendar of Events page. Use the back button on your browser to return here.

July 13   Victoria   Criss-Cross Coptic   Paperworks Gallery, Victoria   
               to register: 250-652-4485       rose.davidson@shaw.ca

And yes, can you believe it, I'm already booked into January 2003! Here is the tentative schedule! (This is not on the Calendar page of the website yet.)

Oct 5 Tentative Artist's Journal  
Oct 6  Tentative Instant Letters  
Oct 19 Burnaby, B.C.  Criss-Cross Coptic Burnaby Community Education
Oct 20 Surrey, B.C. Artist's Journal Private Class
Oct 26 Tentative Artist's Journal  
Nov 2 Port Alberni, B.C. Artisan's Craft Fair  
Nov 8, 9, 10 Port Alberni, B.C. Work of Heart Craft Fair  
Nov 8, 9  Port Alberni, B.C. Giant Craft Fair  
Nov 15,16 Duncan, B.C. Christmas Chaos Craft Fair  
Nov 23  Burnaby  Exquisite Heritage Album Burnaby Community Education
Nov 24  Surrey, B.C. Charmers II  Private Class
Jan 25,26 Tentative Artist's Journal  


If there is any information you would like to see in this newsletter, let me know. Each month I will email you to let you know the new issue is published. If you know someone who would like to receive notice of byhand, just have them email me and I will put them on the list. Bye for now and thanks for visiting!

(250) 723-0321 Quietfire Design

The original title lettering of byhand was done with a Mitchell's Roundhand Nib, size 0, and Higgins Eternal Ink. Quietfire Design Rubber stamps were used to create the other designs.


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© 2002 Suzanne Cannon
It is for the personal use of the subscriber and may not be reproduced without written permission from Suzanne. You are welcome to email or print it in it's entirety to share with friends, but ask that you include this copyright. Thank you for your help and your understanding.