By Hand, Ink

Books ~ Stationery ~ Gifts

Blog

Blog

My Tools

Posted on 28 August, 2014 at 11:10

     Many of the tools I use in my work can honestly be classified as “vintage.” I’m still using the same Sheaffer fountain pens with calligraphy nibs that I discovered decades ago. (I just framed an article about me that was published in The Salem [Ohio] News on July 29, 1983. Yowza!)

     Of course, I’ve replaced the nibs several times and ink, especially colored ink, is becoming more difficult to find. I’m left-handed, and need special nibs – if I try to use a right-handed nib, the ink doesn’t flow properly and the nib catches on the paper fibers . . . not good. I adore the Zig felt-tipped markers and brushes I found recently, but the fountain pens are my go-to, always-reliable workhorses.

Two of my most cherished possessions are a small camel hair brush and a pair of needle-nose pliers with spiffy red handles.

     The brush belonged to my father, Robert Vincent Oktavec, a talented, creative man who was an airplane/helicopter mechanic by trade, and an artist by the grace of God. He was a gifted photographer (obviously, I did not inherit that talent!) and an equally gifted artist who could sketch a life-like bunny or deer whenever his spoiled rotten little girl asked her daddy to please draw something. In retirement, he took up model railroading and jewelry making. When I found his brush as I was sorting things to use in the studio, I thought it would be perfect for dusting the glass, mat, and paper before framing my calligraphy. There is nothing more annoying than assembling a framing project and then discovering a speck of dust or piece of lint behind the glass! Sadly, the brush is so old that the bristles are loose, and create more litter than they remove! But it 's at my work table, a daily reminder of my daddy’s presence, and his unconditional love. I know he would be so proud to see what I’m up to these days.

     The pliers were hastily stashed in my toolbox for the trip from our condo over to the studio and then promptly forgotten until I needed them one day. The first time I used them, they pinched my hand quite hard and when I turned them over, I began to weep – not from the pain, but from what I saw: “Missy” . . .

Michelle Lynn Thompson Hahn was our precious daughter-in-love who married our son, Robert. A brain tumor took her from us when she was only 29. She was the daughter I never gave birth to - bright, funny, beautiful, mischievous, and loving – and the most spiritual person I’ve ever known. She will be an inspiration and role model to me for as long as I live. I miss her dreadfully, but I thank God for the gift of her in our lives, even for so brief a time. She taught first grade, and the pliers were ones she used in her classroom. When I saw her name, I smiled through my tears and said, “Good morning, Missy!” I have other needle-nose pliers at home, and they’ve never hurt me. But every time I use these, I get a gentle pinch . . . so I smile and tell my pretty girl hello, and that I love her and miss her.

     As I sit at my light table using the age-old artform of calligraphy to create items people will enjoy in their homes or give as gifts, I am warmed by being surrounded by tools used by special people who have been so very important in my life, making my work even more rewarding.

     Life is, indeed, good.

 

Categories: None

Post a Comment

Oops!

Oops, you forgot something.

Oops!

The words you entered did not match the given text. Please try again.

138 Comments

Reply curry 7
14:11 on 28 August, 2020 
I am also commenting to let you be aware of of the notable encounter our girl undergone using your web page. She came to find plenty of details, which include what it is like to possess an incredible teaching style to have many others quite simply understand certain tricky issues. You actually did more than our own expected results. Many thanks for providing those warm and friendly, dependable, educational as well as unique tips about that topic to Mary.
curry 7 http://www.curry7.us
Reply moncler jackets
16:17 on 28 August, 2020 
Thank you so much for giving everyone a very memorable opportunity to read critical reviews from this website. It's always so lovely and full of a lot of fun for me personally and my office friends to search your web site minimum thrice every week to find out the fresh tips you have got. And lastly, we are usually fascinated with all the tremendous tactics you give. Selected 3 areas in this post are particularly the finest we have ever had.
moncler jackets http://www.monclerjackets.us
Reply golden goose outlet
22:01 on 29 August, 2020 
I as well as my friends were reviewing the great techniques found on your site and then instantly I got an awful suspicion I never thanked the website owner for those tips. These women ended up totally glad to read them and have now in reality been tapping into those things. Appreciation for simply being indeed thoughtful and also for picking out this form of incredibly good subjects millions of individuals are really desirous to learn about. Our own honest regret for not saying thanks to you earlier.
golden goose outlet http://www.goldengooseoutlet.us
Reply kobe byrant shoes
15:31 on 30 August, 2020 
I'm commenting to let you be aware of what a notable experience my cousin's girl gained browsing your site. She came to find several issues, including what it is like to possess an incredible giving style to let the rest quite simply know selected problematic topics. You really surpassed my expected results. Thank you for delivering those practical, trusted, informative not to mention cool guidance on the topic to Julie.
kobe byrant shoes http://www.kobe-shoes.us.com
Reply jordan shoes
17:32 on 30 August, 2020 
Thank you for your whole efforts on this web site. Betty enjoys conducting investigation and it's easy to see why. My partner and i hear all regarding the powerful way you offer advantageous tips and hints by means of this web site and therefore boost contribution from some other people on that article and our daughter is undoubtedly being taught so much. Take pleasure in the remaining portion of the new year. You are always conducting a first class job.
jordan shoes http://www.shoesjordan.us.com
Reply balenciaga
20:46 on 31 August, 2020 
I and my friends have already been taking note of the great advice located on your web site while then came up with an awful feeling I had not thanked the web blog owner for those techniques. My men ended up as a consequence thrilled to read through them and have in effect definitely been using those things. Appreciation for genuinely very helpful and then for deciding upon variety of useful areas most people are really needing to know about. My sincere regret for not expressing gratitude to you sooner.
balenciaga http://www.balenciagaspeeds.com
Reply lebron shoes
13:26 on 1 September, 2020 
My husband and i ended up being absolutely satisfied Albert managed to deal with his inquiry from the precious recommendations he gained out of your weblog. It is now and again perplexing to just continually be releasing facts which usually many people may have been trying to sell. And now we grasp we have got the website owner to give thanks to because of that. The type of illustrations you have made, the easy web site menu, the relationships your site help promote - it is everything awesome, and it is making our son in addition to the family reason why this subject is enjoyable, which is extraordinarily mandatory. Thanks for everything!
lebron shoes http://www.lebronjamesshoes.name
Reply longchamp
15:41 on 1 September, 2020 
I have to get across my passion for your generosity giving support to men and women who should have help with this particular concept. Your real dedication to getting the solution all over came to be really practical and has without exception encouraged ladies much like me to get to their aims. Your amazing valuable guidelines implies this much to me and especially to my peers. With thanks; from everyone of us.
longchamp http://www.long-champ.us.com
Reply hermes belt
18:11 on 2 September, 2020 
My husband and i have been absolutely cheerful when Raymond managed to conclude his investigations through the entire ideas he gained from your very own blog. It's not at all simplistic to simply always be giving away tricks that many a number of people have been selling. And we realize we have you to thank because of that. The illustrations you made, the simple website menu, the friendships you help to promote - it's got most fantastic, and it's really leading our son and our family understand this subject is thrilling, which is certainly seriously mandatory. Many thanks for the whole lot!
hermes belt http://www.hermesbelts.com
Reply lebron 17 shoes
4:19 on 3 September, 2020 
I have to point out my respect for your kindness giving support to individuals who should have help with your matter. Your personal commitment to getting the solution all-around appeared to be remarkably effective and has always empowered men and women just like me to attain their desired goals. Your own warm and helpful recommendations entails a great deal to me and somewhat more to my office workers. With thanks; from each one of us.
lebron 17 shoes http://www.lebron17.us
Reply moncler jackets
6:56 on 3 September, 2020 
This web page is really a walk-by way of for the entire data you needed about this and didn?t know who to ask. Glimpse here, and you?ll definitely uncover it.
moncler jackets http://www.monclerjackets.us.org
Reply supreme hoodie
4:01 on 4 September, 2020 
Youre so cool! I dont suppose Ive read anything like this before. So good to find any individual with some authentic ideas on this subject. realy thanks for starting this up. this website is something that is wanted on the internet, someone with a bit originality. useful job for bringing something new to the web!
supreme hoodie http://www.supremeshoodie.com
Reply moncler outlet
11:05 on 4 September, 2020 
It is best to take part in a contest for the most effective blogs on the web. I'll suggest this website!
moncler outlet http://www.monclercoat.us.com
Reply air jordan shoes
17:12 on 4 September, 2020 
After study a number of of the weblog posts on your web site now, and I actually like your means of blogging. I bookmarked it to my bookmark website listing and might be checking again soon. Pls check out my website online as nicely and let me know what you think.
air jordan shoes http://www.jordansshoes.us.org
Reply supreme new york
14:20 on 5 September, 2020 
Can I simply say what a relief to search out someone who actually is aware of what theyre speaking about on the internet. You definitely know the right way to carry an issue to mild and make it important. Extra folks have to read this and understand this aspect of the story. I cant believe youre not more in style because you positively have the gift.
supreme new york http://www.supremes.us.org
Reply supreme
13:45 on 6 September, 2020 
That is the appropriate weblog for anyone who needs to seek out out about this topic. You understand so much its nearly exhausting to argue with you (not that I really would want?HaHa). You definitely put a new spin on a topic thats been written about for years. Nice stuff, simply nice!
supreme http://www.supremesclothingstore.com
Reply nike off white
16:09 on 6 September, 2020 
After study a few of the blog posts in your website now, and I truly like your manner of blogging. I bookmarked it to my bookmark website record and shall be checking back soon. Pls try my site as effectively and let me know what you think.
nike off white http://www.offwhiteshoes.us.com
Reply jordan shoes
18:53 on 6 September, 2020 
Youre so cool! I dont suppose Ive learn something like this before. So nice to seek out any person with some unique thoughts on this subject. realy thank you for beginning this up. this website is one thing that's needed on the internet, someone with slightly originality. helpful job for bringing something new to the internet!
jordan shoes http://www.jordanstoreonline.com
Reply kawhi leonard shoes
19:59 on 6 September, 2020 
Spot on with this write-up, I really think this website wants far more consideration. I?ll most likely be once more to read much more, thanks for that info.
kawhi leonard shoes http://www.kawhileonardshoes.us
Reply kd 10
16:32 on 7 September, 2020 
Nice post. I study something more difficult on completely different blogs everyday. It would at all times be stimulating to read content material from different writers and practice slightly something from their store. I?d choose to use some with the content on my blog whether you don?t mind. Natually I?ll provide you with a hyperlink on your web blog. Thanks for sharing.
kd 10 http://www.kd-10.us