The first time I ever did lettering I was 8 years old and I had no idea that's what I was doing. My parents had just bought our very first family computer, an Acer desktop with Windows XP and Microsoft Office. I had just started primary school, and I was completely starstruck by this futuristic machine; the moment I turned it on and saw the screen flash I immediately wondered where the games were. There were none. After that I began to fool around the windows and the bright icons, clicking and double clicking until I fell upon Paint. I was hooked. Every day after school for the next year or so I'd go sit at the computer, religiously, open Paint and just draw for hours.
Technology completely changed my world since it basically introduced me to a whole new one right there in my living room.
My first interaction with Microsoft Word wasn't as mindblowing as it was with Paint, but it made a much bigger impact. I remember thinking Word was boring, it was all writing and just letters with no personality, it all seemed... Dull. And then, right there in the middle of the twenty default fonts found on Windows back then, I saw it, the most beautiful handwriting I had ever seen: Edwardian Script.
I fell in love with that font; I couldn't stop looking at those letters, so elegant and flowy, so full of personality! Nowadays it's such a non-issue since it's been used and overused, but for me, at 8 years old, it was a revelation. I printed the full alphabet, capitals included, and I proceeded to copy them, all of them, draw them, trace them, redraw them by hand and just let them flow and take over me. I didn't know it back then, but I was doing the most basic, most essential aspect of lettering.
I kept doing that until I was about 11, and then stopped completely because well, puberty happened. During the next ten years I focused on being a good kid, getting good grades and watching a lot of TV; I was still very fascinated and interested in design and typography, which is why I went to school for graphic design, but it wasn't until two years ago that I really took it upon myself to really seek this through, and just see where it would lead me.
As I stated in a different post, the first two lettering artists I ever heard of were Sean McCabe and Ryan Hamrick, about eight or nine years ago; back then they were fairly known and I remember being so excited about their blog posts describing their tools and their pieces.
Ryan had an amazing style and a great sense of composition and color handling that I quickly became a huge fan. His posts were always straightforward, with clear instructions and very easy to digest concepts.
Sean was a bit more inspirational, his work was impeccable and super neat, which I thought was completely unattainable since I'm a mess when I draw. His posts were dry but precise, and they always left me feeling refreshed, he has a way of telling you the things you think you know but don't until he explains it to you.
Those two artists brought me back to lettering and showed me that a career as a Letterer is not possible but actually quite lucrative and fun, as long as you really invest a lot of yourself in it, and that you're really passionate about it. Nowadays I find myself falling in love with type over and over, because of social media and the communities that have emerged from it, I am constantly reminded and inspired to create and to show up every single day.