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Boxed   A box is drawn around an element of the composition. Perhaps a Capital Letter, or an Illustration. Various treatments may be applied inside the box. This is often square, but can be round, oval, rectangular, etc.

Capitals   Upper Case Letters, usually used to begin a word

Decorated Surface decoration is applied. Color variations, pattern, breaking up the form, etc.


Counter   The open space inside a Letter. Think of a capital D. The space within this letter is a Counter.


Decorative Bar A decorative element surrounded by straight lines or approximating straight lines and to which a decorative treatment has been applied.

Document Board   A support surface for your document. The work is held in place at the corners with ribbons and is easily removed later.

Document Folder   A folded support for your document. The outside usually has the name of the recipient

Designed   Designed letters or flourishes need to fit into, or work in specific spaces or interact with certain elements.

Fill   An enclosed area is filled with color, pattern, illustration, etc.

Flourishing   A decorative element created by sweeping strokes, sometimes but not necessarily attached to the lettering

Free Flourishes   These flourishes may fill an uncertain space or shape

Tight Flourishes  These flourishes must fit into a certain shape or land in a specific spot.


Footer  Any element included at the bottom of either a composition or an element in that composition.


Incised  Decoration created by pressing into the layer with (usually) a stylus.


Inks   Pigment or dye suspended in a carrier, usually acrylic, but sometimes varnish, honey, gum arabic or

others. Used for lettering and painting.

Metallic Ink  bits of metal are suspended in a carrier, usually acrylic or gum arabic. Used for lettering and painting. Sometimes takes the place of metallic leaf.

Transparent Ink   Any ink that is not completely opaque. Lettering done with transparent ink shows a doubling of darkness where the pen direction changes. A distinctive quality associated with hand lettering.

Illustration   Art added to a composition for story telling purposes.

Interactive   The Lettering and Illustration work together. A cat may peak out between letter parts. A Letter may surround a house.

Interlace   A form of design where two or more elements interweave, over and under.


Intertwine   A form of design where two or more elements wrap around each other, often organically.


Large and Small Capitals   Instead of Upper and Lower Case Letters, Words begin with large Capitals and the balance is written in small Capitals


Logo   A design element intended to identify a business or person. This is usually rights-protected.


Outline   A design element that surrounds another element, usually in a uniform way, such as a box made of straight lines. It can touch or parallel the edge of the other element(s).


Flame    An outline that breaks at intervals to insert a flame like shape


Bump   An outline that breaks at intervals to insert a half-round shape


Pattern   Any decorative element that repeats


Pen Change   To create different sizes and boldnesses, different sized pen nibs are used.


Resolution   A statement placed into the minutes of a Corporate Entity and agreed to by the majority of it's Board of Directors.

Serif   A triangular ending for a letter stroke that creates a base or top for the letter. Originally, a way to allow the water to drain out of a carved letter.

Shade  1. A darkening of a color by adding Black 2. The increased boldness of a pointed pen stroke created by adding pressure to the pen. 

Seal   An embossing or debossing devise used to create a dimensional change in the surface of the paper. This marks the paper as official.

Signature Captions   Description of the person who will sign on the Signature Line. It may name the person, or it may name their position.

Signature Lines   A predesignated area for the presenter(s) to sign a document, usually with a drawn ink line, but sometimes in pencil for later removal

Squiggles   Free-form curvy lines

Swirls   Curvy lines that are controlled in some way.

Tint   A lightening of a color by adding White

Italic/Uncial/Bookhand/Old English/Roman/Spencerian   Names of Lettering Styles. See Font Sheet

Value     The relative lightness or darkness of a color. Usually referred to on a numbered scale, often 0-9

Versal   An Initial Capital in a text block. Originally, the beginning of a Verse. It is enlarged and often decorated


White Vine    A form of decoration created with interlacing and swirly white vines.


Word Count    The total number of words in any given project. Originally based on a 5-letter word. In a Word Document, click on "Tools" then click on "Word Count" . Usually, no adjustment needs to be made for long and short words.

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