For the love of a handwritten letter and trying to prove a point

February #month of love

By Barbara Schmidt, studiobstyle

Once upon a time I was really into calligraphy. I had a teacher in junior high school that encouraged me and encouraged me to draw out the alphabet. We were asked to draw out three capitals and three lower case examples of each letter. He knew I loved to draw but all the calligraphy pens at the time where slanted for right-handers and I am one of those special lefties.

Photographer Karl Herber; Creative Director and Stylist Barbara Schmidt, studiobstyle

Photographer Karl Herber; Creative Director and Stylist Barbara Schmidt, studiobstyle

I practiced and practiced some more, but still I fell behind everyone else to complete lettering the complete alphabet. I remember my teacher lifting my spirits up to try to meet the goals of the class. He had no admonishment only patience and that is what I remember most from him. Well, and also his thick black curly hair and dark eyes with enormous eyebrows that lifted when he was trying to help me.

Photographer Karl Herber; Creative Director and Stylist Barbara Schmidt, studiobstyle

Photographer Karl Herber; Creative Director and Stylist Barbara Schmidt, studiobstyle

Once I finally had the groove of the pen’s slanted edge, I zoomed past everyone else and soared to finish extra hand lettered sayings like “The Time is Now”, and “Time Heals all Wounds”. I was fascinated by time because it seems to drag when things weren’t going well and then speed up when things are synching up to expectations.

Photographer Karl Herber; Creative Director and Stylist Barbara Schmidt, studiobstyle

Photographer Karl Herber; Creative Director and Stylist Barbara Schmidt, studiobstyle

When I was even younger and attending a grade school in Boston, I was scolded for dotting my “i’s” with a circle. Ever the artist, I was crushed that she couldn’t allow for a little creative license. So I fell into step with everyone else and dotted my “i’s” with simple dot point. Funny that I remember this as one of those points (pun intended) that made me want to create art more not less. And there’s that rebellious streak.

Photographer Karl Herber; Creative Director and Stylist Barbara Schmidt, studiobstyle

Photographer Karl Herber; Creative Director and Stylist Barbara Schmidt, studiobstyle

It takes time to hand-write letters and these days that seems like a luxury to me. I could spend all day curving ink into swirls of sonnets but I also have deadlines to meet every week. I’m much more likely to produce a story on collectible pens these days. Featured here is an editorial I created with love in my heart and no time on my hands.

Barbara Schmidt