Visible Ink

Visible Ink

This is a  post based on a  Daily Prompt,  “Quote”, from I don’t how long ago. I was intrigued so I started this post, but I never finished it. I worked today, and my brain is sleepy, and I had no idea what to write about, so it seemed as good a time as any to revisit it.

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“The pages are still blank, but there is a miraculous feeling of the words being there, written in invisible ink and clamoring to become visible.”

-Vladimir Nabokov

It’s common to be moved by the words of others. We’ve all experienced it. Sometimes someone else is able to say in a hauntingly precise and accurate way exactly what we’re feeling. There’s something magical about that. Not only does it validate our feelings, but gives us a sense of camaraderie. We know that someone, somewhere, at some point in time felt just the way we do. A kindred spirit, if only in this one way.

I debated between several different quotes before ultimately settling on this one. It seemed logical to choose the quote that inspired the name of my blog.

I have often sat with a blank page in front of me, pen in hand (or fingers on the keyboard), unable to muster a single word to put down. At times I’ve felt almost intimidated by the purity of the page.

wanted to write, but I couldn’t. I felt like there was something there, deep inside. Words that wanted to come out. I just couldn’t seem to grab a hold of them.

This quote reminds me of when you buy a new journal. You bring it home, tingling with excitement. At home, you flip through it. Smelling the pages. Feeling the smoothness of the paper. You can’t wait to write in it. But you don’t. It takes time to work up the courage to write the first word because to begin writing is to risk marring the page. To risk destroying the beauty, the pureness of the page. To risk failing. Because what you hold in your hand is more than a journal, it is possibility.  It is your dreams. The hope for what you might create in the future.

That’s what every blank page is, whether it’s a piece of paper in a notebook or a screen in front of you. Every blank page holds infinite possibility, and that is as daunting as it is exhilarating.

When I found this quote it spoke to me because it so perfectly described this feeling I had felt so many times but had never even thought to express. It was almost as if these words could have one day come from how my own mind and pen if it had not already been said by Nabokov. And at the same time, it feels as though I could never express myself so beautifully and concisely.

I started this blog for many reasons, but the main one was to write. To put words down and share them. To write more, and to learn to write better.

I chose the name Conspicuous Ink as an allusion to this quote.I wanted to represent the feeling behind what inspired me to start this blog, as well keep a reminder for myself that the words are there. Sometimes you have to work for them, but they’re there. I wanted this blog to be a tool to uncovering the words hidden in the pages.

Word Art Wednesday: What I’ve Been Doing

Word Art Wednesday: What I’ve Been Doing

Word Art Wednesday is my new project designed to help me practice my hand lettering and calligraphy skills.

The goal is to post examples of my lettering and calligraphy practice once a week. Every Wednesday I will show off what I’ve been working on for the previous week, good or bad.

I came up with the idea as a way to encourage myself to spend time every week on both my writing/blogging goals and lettering/calligraphy practice, allowing them to reinforce each other, while I work on improving my skills in each. I also hope that having a visual representation of my progress will keep me motivated and help prevent me from being discouraged during those inevitable moments of doubt when I think I’ll never improve.

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Hand lettering and calligraphy are old hobbies of mine. Hobbies that I haven’t thought much about in a long time, until recently. Sparked by an idea for a gift for a friend, my interest has been reignited. And as often happens, I’ve been so enraptured by it that I have barely been able to focus on anything else.

And for this, my writing has suffered, and I’ve neglected this blog.

have been writing these last couple of weeks, but not as much as I would like. And I haven’t been sticking to my posting schedule for this blog. I’ve been unable to focus.

I decided I needed a way to stick to my writing and blogging goals, while still allotting some time each week to practicing my calligraphy and hand lettering.

I have a tendency to become deeply enthralled in something for a brief period of time, before abandoning it entirely.  I don’t want this to happen. I enjoy lettering, but I’m not especially good at it. Besides, I haven’t done it in a really long time. I need to practice.

That’s why I’m starting “Word Art Wednesday”, which would probably be more adequately called “Word Art Practice Wednesday”, but that’s a little cumbersome.

 

The idea is to bring the two things together, to allow them to work together and reinforce each other. By working my new hobby into my blog, I hope I can work it into my writing plans and goals for the blog, without too much added stress and anxiety.

With that said, here’s what I’ve been working on the last couple of weeks.

Calligraphy:

I’m using a fairly wide nib, which is recommended for beginners because it’s easier to see what you are or aren’t doing properly. The font I’m working on is Roman minuscule, modern 2. I chose lowercase because for some reason I was finding that much easier than uppercase. I’m pretty happy at the moment because I’ve been practicing for just about two weeks and I feel like I’m already improving. This week I plan on working on some capital letters as well, so I can write proper sentences.

Lettering:

I’ve been doing a lot of doodling and experimenting with pens, pencils, and fonts, mostly. This is a small (and the best) sampling of what probably appears like bunch of random scribbles to anyone but me. There are many options with lettering and I’m still working on what direction I want to start with.

 

photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/8263540@N05/9169068026″>Pen and Paper</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a&gt; <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/”>(license)</a&gt;

Lessons in Invisibility

Lessons in Invisibility

This is what I’ve learned:
Rule 1: Stay out of the way. If someone bumps into you, you’re cover is blown.
Rule 2: Don’t bump into anything or knock anything over. It doesn’t matter if they can’t see you, if you start making a ruckus.
Rule 3: While we’re on the subject, be quiet. Wear clothing that doesn’t rustle too much, walk gently, and don’t breath too heavily.

I’m upstairs in the bedroom when I hear noise in the kitchen. I got home from work early and came up to change. I finish dressing quickly. This is perfect. I prepare myself. I check my reflection in the mirror and it isn’t there. It’s weird not having a reflection, but that’s how I know it’s working. Continue reading “Lessons in Invisibility”