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Letter Carving Course [NLLA]

April 18, 2015 - April 19, 2015


Letter Carving Course Flyer

The aim of this letter carving course is to introduce complete beginners to drawn Roman Capital lettering and the basic techniques of carving letters in stone. This course is also suitable for anyone who has had some previous experience and wishes to develop their skills.


The course will be run over two days and will be structured as follows:


Timings: the course will run from 10am to 4.30pm each day.

  • Course welcome and introduction
  • Introduction to drawing Roman capital letters
  • Lunch
  • Drawn lettering/draw inscription project
  • Introduction to letter carving


  • Carving of inscription project
  • Lunch
  • Carving of inscription project

Before the course begins, think of a four- or five-letter word that wish to carve. A couple of weeks before the course begins let Simon know your word and he will get a piece of Italian slate cut to size for your word to fit on. Please bear in mind that Italian slate is only suitable for use indoors as the colour fades outside. For those attending the course for the first time the cost of the slate is included in the course fee. Alternatively you may have your own piece of stone that you want to use. If this is the case please speak to Simon about this before hand so that he can check the suitability of the stone for carving. He can bring a small selection of stone which will be available for purchase to the course.

Equipment list

  • Pencils, HB and or H
  • Pencil sharpener
  • Eraser
  • Ruler
  • Calculator
  • Layout paper not cartridge paper
  • A drawing board if you have one, but not essential
  • Dust mask and safety glasses (Due to the high silica content of sandstone it is essential that dust masks are worn when sandstone is being carved.)
  • Steel toe capped boots or sturdy footwear
  • Packed lunch (there is a shop in the village)

Simon will supply all other equipment necessary for carving such as letter carving dummies (mallet), chisels, sharpening stones, easels and lighting. If you have your own dummy and chisels you may want to use these as you will be more familiar with your own tools. Should you wish to purchase your own dummy and chisels, Simon can give you details of suppliers. He will also provide tea, coffee and biscuits.

Reading list

If you are interested in getting some background reading in before the course I recommend that you read one of the following books as this will help to provide you with an overview of what will be covered during the three days.

  • Tom Perkins, The Art of Letter Carving in Stone, (The Crowood Press Ltd, 2007)
    (This has become the standard reference book for letter carving and has detailed advice on drawn lettering and carving techniques, drawn alphabets and many photographs of contemporary letter carver’s work, a must have book for anyone interested in lettering.)
  • Michael Harvey, Carving Letters in Stone & Wood, (The Bodley Head Ltd, 1987)
  • Richard Grasby, Letter Cutting in Stone: A Work Book, (Sacketts, 2011)

Contact details

Should you wish to contact Simon with any questions then please feel free to contact him by email or telephone.

Course Fees and Payment

The fee for this weekend workshop is £120 per person, with a maximum of six places available. Contact Simon for bank details or address to send payment to.

Letter Carving Course [NLLA]


April 18, 2015
April 19, 2015
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