Handwriting Day w/ Featured Artist: Gerald Moscato

A new year is here, and filled with fun little holidays to celebrate different hobbies, organizations, or just to make sure no day is ever too ordinary. This month brings us one that we are always excited to utilize- National Handwriting Day!

January 23rd was chosen for this holiday as it’s also John Hancock’s birthday (you may remember him as the first person to sign the Declaration of Independence.. and whose name has become somewhat synonymous with a handwritten signature.) We love holidays like these- anything that gets people to write like the good old days, with pen on paper. Last April, for National Letterwriting Month, we had the joy of seeing dozens of handwritten letters you guys took the time to send us. Each one was fantastic, unique, and still displayed in our marker supply warehouse for us to look at as an occasional pick me up!

One of the participants for our Letterwriting Month Pen Pal Contest sent some wonderfully written notes that showed several styles of handwriting and they remained among our favorites.

With the expressive styles of lettering we saw in his pen pal notes, we knew that he was definitely among those who truly enjoy handwriting and the whimsical ways each letter can be written. In an “artist statement” from his website, we love how he describes part of this passion to turn handwriting into something extra special:

“The alphabet is an artform in and of itself…26 jewels evolving from pictographic markings. Each letter displaying a unique shape, evoking a somewhat different visual meaning when juxtaposed with its 25 counterparts.”

We were happy to catch up with him again and find out more of what led to his love of lettering! As you discover & practice your own styles of writing, we hope to inspire you with our latest featured artist- Gerald Moscato!

Artist Gerald Moscato working in studio on an engraving project

(Photo credits in this blog go to Gerald Moscato. Thanks for giving us a view into your catalog of work!)


A little Q & A with Jerry:

How long have you enjoyed playing around with lettering styles and was there anything specific that first got you interested in it?

“My passion for lettering began at 5 years old with my Grandfather, affectionally known as Grandpa Pete. In later years, as my calligraphy style developed, I learned his true Italian birth name, Pietro Paulo Vincenzo Moscato. Sometimes penning his name, I would articulate it allowing to roll off my tongue. Perhaps this little vocal playfulness added to the penmanship.”

“I digress. Grandpa would spend hours demonstrating his handwriting skills actually when handwriting was taught in grammar school. He would warm up penning a “spring” until the spacing and height were almost perfect. The only recollection of a lettering style was his penning of Moscato. I recall being captivated by his style especially to the majuscule, M. I always referred to it as a candy cane turned sideways with 3 sticks. Hey, not bad insight for a 5 year old kid, eh?”


Are there any teachers, inspirations, or other letterers that you admire?

“My late wife, Christine. She was a word-smythe writing poetry to prose; the highs & lows of life and many quaint aphorisms. She was well read at times reading several books a week. This, perhaps, was the grist of her written endeavors, interpreting it in her own style. I have penned many of her narratives. One of my favorites is “My Pen is My Paintbrush” in which I have rendered several versions.”

“Mentors include Hermann Zapf, a tenured calligrapher (the BEST!) as well as a typography designer, ie, Palatino, Optima and Zapfino, to name a few.
Herb Lubalin, designer of Avant Garde typeface and founding member of International Typeface Corp. His typographic skills were out of this world.
Scribes: Donald Jackson, Scribe to the Queen of England; Timothy Botts, who creates many works of Bible passages; David Quay, Holly Dickens, Robert Borja, Pam Paulsrud, among others.”


Do you remember the first project you would consider the beginning of your professional career as a calligrapher?

“Oddly, I do not recall my first calligraphy commission or professional endeavor. However, I do recall my first calligraphy encounter as a self taught student! I chose a steel nib pen, sumi, on graph paper. I struggled with the ink flow with heavy splotches and messy letters. It was a pivotal time because I began thinking of other less artistic outlets…LoL! The sample here was rendered in May 1978.”


Any other notable/interesting jobs or memorable achievements?

“A most notable project was a commission for a young groom, “John.” After asking (“Jane”) for her hand in marriage, they began making all wedding plans. About 10 or 12 weeks prior to the wedding day, Jane was Dx with Stage 3 cancer. Jane was insistent about canceling the wedding. John began writing his thoughts and feelings for Jane. He sought a calligrapher to pen his narrative and commissioned me. It was the most challenging project I had ever encountered since it was such a personal request steeped with emotion. In this calligraphic  letter, he repeated his marriage request which she tearfully accepted. He did report back that she thought it was very special having his narrative lovingly inscribed. About a year later, John contacted me that the wedding was beautiful, however, Jane had gone home. Usually, I keep a picture record of all calligraphy projects but due to the sensitive and highly emotion of this project, I did not.”

“A really fun project was hand-lettering (brush) “Las Vegas” for banners on the Strip. They were mounted up and down the Strip in mid to late 90s! There were about 4 different designs with same lettering on each. This one shows a photo Light montage at the MGM. I tried to get a banner once the promotion ended but could not.”

“My Magnum Opus? In 2012, I published my long overdue eBook/CD, “The First 50 Years, A Compendium of Calligraphy, Lettering & Graphic Design” First and foremost is if this were a traditional printed book, it would tally around 450 pages and priced accordingly. This eBook/CD is jam packed with notable calligraphy, lettering and design projects. At the end of Book 1 & 2, several case studies are presented detailing “behind-the-scenes” accounts. For the beginning student, these case studies demonstrate many aspects of the business side of this profession. Inspiration is provided to the tenured calligrapher as well. The eBook/CD is archived in the Newberry Library, Wing Collection and San Francisco Library as well. The libraries afford those who do not own the eBook, an opportunity to view in a library setting. In other words, a FREE pass to see this volume of work.”

For more details on Gerald Moscato’s eBook/CD, or to order a copy, CLICK HERE! 🙂 (once CDs are sold out, a USB flash drive version will be available.)


Any tips, ideas, or words of encouragement for folks just starting to experiment with hand lettering?

“PRACTICE is best advice to anyone starting OR with many years experience, like myself. ‘I am a PRACTICING Calligrapher!’ Why Practicing? Because there’s always something to learn, a new tool to try with endless artistic expressions to explore! The sky is the limit!”


Some Supplies to Try!

When looking through his creative catalog of lettering art, we saw Gerald had made great use of many different tools. As you go about practicing your own writings, we encourage you to play around with various types of pens and markers, as well as multiple tip styles- from brush, to broad edge, to fine liners. These are a few Gerald has used from Marker Supply in his work over the years:
(click each one for a link to its page in our webstore!)

Zig: Posterman, Calligraphy, Brushables, Embossing

Sakura: Gelly Rolls, Pigma Micron Pens (stippling), Pigma Calligrapher, PenTouch Calligrapher

Sharpie: many varieties.


Gerald has found many ways to bring his artistic versions of writing into the world- everywhere from weddings to wall art. We encourage anyone who enjoys the thought of taking their handwriting to another level, whether a scribbly beginner or already a calligrapher of sorts, to get those pens on some paper and see where they take you. Use Handwriting Day as a great time to start, then continue having fun with it as often as you can! Keep practicing, try new things, and let your surroundings inspire you..

Some beautiful memorial lettering done by Gerald for his late wife, Christine


Thanks again to Gerald “Jerry” Moscato for sharing his time and talents with us! We admire what he’s already accomplished and know that he’ll continue to create beautiful works in the future. 🙂

Happy Handwriting Day 2018, everyone!!

Featured Artist: Loveleigh Loops

For the rest of July, we are focusing a little more on our brush pens and brush style lettering here at Marker Supply. (For more info on the types of brush markers we carry, see our previous blog post, Overview of Brush Markers.)

We LOVE featuring talented folks here on the Marker Supply Blog, and for this month we are happy to introduce you to some fantastic brush lettering artists- Jordan and Jillian of Loveleigh Loops!

LoveleighLoops-225*Photo by Knack Creative

Creative crafters and calligraphers since childhood, these twin sisters love designing various lettering projects themselves, as well as teaching others how to develop their own talent.

Something that helped get you started was a calligraphy class when you were kids. Was there any advice from that class that stood out so well you can still remember it today now that you are teaching lettering yourselves?

“We took our very first calligraphy class when we were 11 years old and absolutely loved it! The style we learned then is different from what we do today but we still remember the most important thing from the class: to have patience and go slowly. That is one of the biggest things that we stress today when we teach our students. It is tempting to skip ahead to the fancy stuff or to compare your work to the work of someone who has been doing calligraphy for years, but it is even more important to start with the basics. Calligraphy is a beautiful art, but it is incredibly difficult to master.”

*Photo/Lettering by Loveleigh Loops
Made using the Sakura Micron Pens and the Zig Fudebiyori Brush Markers

What makes you different from other calligraphers and letterers?

“There are so many talented lettering artists out there, but we think that our business is truly unique because there are two of us. We are able to bounce ideas off of each other. The best way to continue learning is by teaching, and we are always showing each other new techniques and skills. We have also each mastered our own style, so we can do anything from playful to formal. We also use a lot of different tools, such as embossing and gold foil, to provide our clients with a greater variety. Our students appreciate that there are two of us during our workshops because it allows for more robust learning experience since they receive individual attention, even while one of us is at the front of the room instructing.”

LoveleighLoops-211*Photo by Knack Creative

What are some places or things you commonly find inspiration from for your lettering quotes and designs?

“Lettering challenges on Instagram have always been close to our hearts, because that is how we really got started on Instagram. It is a great way to gain confidence in sharing your work, and you immediately become part of an amazing community that inspires and supports you. Many challenges have a daily quote or some other theme. We love these challenges because you spend less time deciding what to write, and more time creating! It is also neat to see others’ interpretations of the same quote.”

Loveloops-FudeMetquote loveloops-AGquote
*Photos/Lettering by Loveleigh Loops
Made using the Zig Fudebiyori Metallic Markers and Zig Art & Graphic Twin Markers

Are there any memorable jobs or projects you’ve done in the lettering world that were particularly fun? Any extra challenging ones?

“Both of us did all of the calligraphy for our own weddings, which gave our special days an even more special touch. One of the most memorable projects that we did was an obituary. The client was so appreciative of our work and treasured the piece, and her gratitude reminded us why we do what we do. The most challenging projects have been those on non-traditional surfaces, such as wine glasses and t-shirts. We love learning new techniques, so it’s always fun to try something new!”

 To see more of Loveleigh Loops’ work, check out their gallery HERE, or visit them on Instagram and Facebook!



Out of all the lettering tools out there, which types do you prefer using and why? Have your tastes in tools changed as your skills have grown?

“Our tastes in tools have changed significantly since we first started. The class we originally took was with a chisel tipped pen, and since then we have learned how to use pointed pen, brush pen, and related tools like waterbrushes. These days, Jillian prefers watercolor brush lettering with a paint brush because it forces her to be patient and enjoy the art, and the color blends are exquisite. Jordan is drawn to the mathematics behind copperplate calligraphy and tends to spend her time with the pointed pen and ink, especially gold ink.”

LoveLoops-goldinkquote*Photos by Loveleigh Loops


This color chart was made using the Kuretake Gansai Tambi Starry Colors paints. Enjoy these beautiful gold pigment ink colors with paintbrushes, waterbrushes, or calligraphy nibs!
Find them HERE in the Marker Supply store!

Any specific tools you would recommend a beginner to start with? What features make them beginner-friendly?

“We recommend that beginners interested in learning calligraphy start with brush pens, and eventually progress to pointed pen.  The Zig Art & Graphic Twin pens are great for those starting out (and we still use them!) because they have the perfect amount of flexibility. Our favorite small-tip brush pen for beginners is the Pentel Sign Brush Pen because of the “juiciness” and color selection. Once a beginner understands the basic strokes, shade placement, and other fundamental concepts of the script, they can move on to more advanced supplies. We also advocate starting with brush pens because they are more affordable and much less messy than dip-pens. You can easily throw a brush pen in your bag and practice on the go!”


Try these recommended tools for yourself!
Find both the Zig Art & Graphic Twin and the Pentel Sign Pen w/Brush Tip here at Marker Supply.



LoveleighLoops-282*Photo by Knack Creative

Interested in learning more about calligraphy and brush lettering styles?

There are several useful guides available to purchase and instantly download HERE at Loveleigh Loops’ online store so you can get started right away at your own pace!

Prefer some in-person instruction? Loveleigh Loops will be hosting several brush lettering workshops this summer, including one here in Nashville on July 25th at our sister company store, Paper & Ink Arts! Come on by for some “loveleigh” lettering lessons!

Click here for more information about their Brush Lettering Workshop at Paper & Ink Arts!


Thank you Jordan and Jillian for sharing your time and talents with us! We look forward to seeing what amazing things you do in the future! 🙂


With the holidays approaching fast, we’ve begun putting together a few lists of marker projects for holiday decorating! Whether you are entertaining guests for dinner, needing fun projects for the kids, or just wanting to make your house or office a bit more festive- keep your eyes here on the Marker Supply blog! We’ll be highlighting products from several different brands, and a few ways you can use them this holiday season!

This 1st Blog in the Holiday Decorating Series features products from Marvy Uchida!

The Marvy Easy Chalkboard Marker

This is one of several new markers here at Marker Supply, and we are excited about it! Chalkboard art is becoming so popular everywhere! This jumbo tip paint marker allows you to easily create a chalkboard surface on paper, wood, and terra cotta! Pair it with the Marvy Bistro Chalk Markers– which will wipe off with just a damp cloth- for easy sign making that you can use over and over!

(Tip: After creating your chalkboard surface, use permanent paint markers (Marvy Decocolor, etc) for the parts of your signs, decorations, etc. that you want to keep there. Then use a water-erasable paint marker (Marvy Bistro, etc) for any part you want changeable. Then when you wipe it with a damp cloth, everything will stay put except for what you want to change!)

Here’s how we used the Easy Chalkboard Marker for the holidays:


*Dinner party labels!
These next few months are big for parties and all kinds of gatherings- make some easy paper card mini chalkboard signs to help keep everything straight!


-Add some elegance to the table with fancy place cards!
-Label your food and drinks to help your guests find just what they like!
-Create some unique tags for your gifts!

*Holiday card photo bubbles!
Sending out cards this year? Make something extra special to fill the mailboxes of your family and friends! Cut out some thought or speech bubble shapes on cardboard or thick paper, then color with the Easy Chalkboard Marker. Use larger cut-outs with your friends as a “photo booth” style prop, or place above babies/pets to give them a voice for your photos/cards!


You can also use some caption bubbles to make a little extra fun for your picture frames!


*The countdown calendar!
Exciting for the kiddos that wait for Santa, helpful for a busy holiday schedule, or fun to see how many days left of the year- make a countdown calendar to keep track of the time until the day you are waiting for! Paint your chalkboard surface on an object, then use the Bistro Chalk markers or plain chalk to make your numbers & change them each day!



Marvy Fine Writing Pens

Whether it’s for adding a splash of color to everyday writing tasks like lists and calendars, or if you are doing fancy lettering on holiday letters, cards, & envelopes, even if you just want a nice look when writing on dark paper- you’ll find some great pens from Marvy!

*Marvy Le Pen
Great for plain OR fancy writing/doodling, the Le Pen’s have an extra fine plastic point
and come in a selection of 18 fun colors!

*Marvy Gel Reminisce
Try these roller ball gel pens for your cards/lists/scrapbooks and more!
The metallics have an especially nice look on dark papers.


*Marvy Calligraphy Pens
Available with fine, medium, and broad square tips- and in several different colors- these pens are a great choice for calligraphy and lettering. Doing crafts that need more permanent writing?
Use the Marvy Calligraphy Permanent Marker or the oil-based Decocolor Calligraphy paint pens.


Marvy Fabric Markers

Marvy has a very large selection of fabric markers that work great for creating custom designs or decorations!

The Marvy Fabric Markers come in 3 tips sizes and many colors. They are permanent without the need to iron/heat set!

The Marvy Decofabric Markers have a fine bullet tip and also feature a variety of colors and effects.

Try some Decofabric sets made perfect for the holiday season!

Use fabric markers on clothing- Make special holiday shirts/hats/socks/shoes with your family!
Color on fabric placemats, napkins, or tablecloths- Add some decorative doodles to the dinner table!

Try coloring some doilies- it’s just like little fabric coloring books!!


Stay tuned to the blog for more project ideas featuring products from other brands we carry at Marker Supply!

Have any holiday marker crafts that you / your friends & family like to do? We love seeing what creative ideas you guys come up with! Post/tag us on our social media pages or email us!

Inspiration Monday : Broad Edge Calligraphy

This week I wanted to share some beautiful broad edge calligraphy work. The following pieces show how much variety you can get with the double ended ZIG Memory System Calligraphy markers. The calligraphy “S” shaped flowers are a favorite and really easy to achieve (I plan on showing you how in one of our upcoming video blogs!). Enjoy!





ZIG Memory System Calligraphy Marker

ZIG Memory System Calligraphy Double Ended Marker available here:


Make this Valentine’s Extra Special with Homemade Sentiments

Valentine’s Day is rapidly approaching, and what better way to express your love to others than an old-fashioned homemade card? With Hallmark and e-cards becoming more popular, taking time to create your own card is a way to show your loved ones how truly special you think they are. Even if you aren’t up to making your own cards, you may want to remember the special day in your scrapbook pages. Here at MarkerSupply, we have a variety of products to help you in your cardmaking and scrapbooking ventures.

Lindsay Smith once again provided excellent examples of Zig markers in action! In this first example, Lindsay used the Scroll and Brush markers highlighted in our last blog for the accents on this scrapbook page. Lettering was done with the Zig Calligraphy markers.

Valentines Page.jpg

For the next two examples, Lindsay used Zig Calligraphy Blending sets for both lettering and accents. The first is a Valentine’s card, while the second simply represents a lettering them that would be most appropriate for Valentine’ Day. The blending sets are available in an array of colors.


Be sure to visit MarkerSupply to see the complete range of markers and colors that we offer to help you get started on your own Valentine’s Day projects!

Zig Calligraphy Blending Sets

The beauty of calligraphy can be made even more appealing by the use of Zig Calligraphy Blending Sets. Each set offers three complimentary colors that can be combined to add that special touch to all of your calligraphy projects. Use these sets to create homemade note cards, address envelopes for special occasions, or even design your own scrapbook pages.

One technique these markers can create is a darker border for your lighter color. To achieve this, follow these steps:
1. Choose two colors from your set, one darker than the other.
2. Open both sides of your lighter marker.
3. Use your darker marker to “color” the tips of the lighter marker.
4. When you then write with the lighter marker, your strokes will have a dark border.
5. See the diagram below for an example.

Zig Calligraphy

The Harmony set pictured below is only one of the many we have available. View our store for the entire collection.

zig calligraphy sets

Calligraphy Overview

Calligraphy is perhaps the most beautiful type of handwritten script, and we offer a variety of pens and markers created specifically for this art form. In the blogs found in this category, you will see the various brand names we offer put to use.