August 17 to 22 

Carl Rohrs

Ghosts of calligraphy: modern moves & 20th century masters

After Julian Waters in 2013 and Carl Rohrs in 2014, we are welcoming this year again the american calligrapher Carl Rohrs.

The workbooks will be around 175 pages of great lettering resources, with much of the material unavailable elsewhere.

Contemporary calligraphy is a combination of thought, touch, tools, technique – and inspiration. So, we’ll be exploring some of the SPECIFIC techniques for making modern letterforms with flat pen, flat brush, pointed brush and ruling pen. At the same time there will be a thorough and loving introduction to the work of my favorite 20th Century calligraphers, and your handouts will contain a healthy sampling of their unusual letters, which will supply us with a forest of inspiration for using the moves that will be covered.

Tools & Techniques

We’ll be concentrating on the flat pen and the unusual effects that occur as the pen loses contact with the paper, bounce, angularity, compression and new ways of dealing with terminals, but will also squeeze in time with the flat brush and the incredible control and texture it offers. Then comes the pointed brush, the most fluid and expressive of tools, and we’ll focus on how to make pointed brush lettering LOOK like its tool and unlike any other writing, from perpendicular strokes to the swelling feather-shaped beauty of parallel strokes. Finally, a quick look at the ruling pen’s whole reason for writing, which is also about subtle paper contact, but approaches the paper with an attitude like a pointed brush.


All these tools and techniques can be used to interpret and steal from the following gentlemen -- Ray DaBoll, Walter Brudi, Roger Excoffon, Albert Kapr, Rudolf Koch, Alfred Linz, Oldrich Menhart, Herbert Post, Helmut Salden, George Salter, Ernst Schneidler, Villu Toots, Georg Trump, Axel Bertram and more. 

Most of them were type designers, most of them were teachers, all of them were calligraphers of startling originality. Take it from someone who loves to be startled. These men came up with new ways of using hands centuries-old as well as their own completely original styles that have been hiding from you for 50 years and more – some that retain the marvelous feeling of their time and some that look as fresh as today. We’ll combine things we like from their work with those modern calligraphy moves to expand our own repertoire of styles and flavor, and help us find our own unique paths.  What we want to do is use some of the most original and powerful writing from the nooks and crannies of the twentieth century to help us to discover our own vision and style in the twenty-first.

Carl Rohrs


Workshop price

This price includes the workshop, hosting in 3 beds room max and restauration for 6 full days.

Welcome August 16th starting 5PM
Departure Aug. 23 in the morning


Domaine de La Dune
156, Boulevard de la Côte d’Argent
33 120 Arcachon


A list of equipment will be sent to you before the workshop