Inspirational Calligraphy on Paper and Fabric in Italy, 2019

Denise Demo.jpg
Denise Demo.jpg

Inspirational Calligraphy on Paper and Fabric in Italy, 2019


The creative design potential of calligraphy is almost limitless. Inspiration, and experimentation can open endless creative avenues, and sharpen your sense of rhythm and balance” Nature certainly provides a wonderful source of inspiration in the absolutely fabulous setting of Southern Italy

 Dates:   May 5-11 Booking Fee: £50

Venue: Puglia, Southern Italy at the Masseria della Zingara

The course is a 5 day course and the fee varies, based on your accommodation, arrival date and departure date. This can be arranged and the deposit paid by contacting Jan 

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Denise has been involved with calligraphy and conceptual writing since 1985. She teaches lettering design and screen printing at the Basel School of Design, and leads calligraphic courses and workshops in Switzerland and abroad. To quote Denise from her book:

“The creative design potential of calligraphy and lettering is almost limitless. Even a blot or a mistake can become a design element, as long as you let it be. Sometimes it may become an essential part of the whole… The process of inspiration, experimentation and critical examination can open endless creative avenues, improve your feeling for good design and sharpen your sense of rhythm and balance”.

We are excited to offer you the opportunity to study with Denise. Her book, ‘Calligraphy, a Book of Contemporary Inspiration’ is just that, an inspiration, and also her recent book Journeys in Calligraphy - Inspiring Scripts from Around the World. 


1. A first approach on paper

Hand lettering, play on letters, textures, composition of short tests or quotes with a particular focus on counter forms, outlines and play on positive/negative

2. Work on fabrics

- On silk setting the outlines with gutta and then coloring the inner surfaces

- On other fabrics previously dipped into a fabric hardener to avoid fusing. In this case the fabric can be given a shape (stone, feather, etc)

- Letters directly written on hardened fabric as an experiment

  • Explore various approaches using calligraphy, writing and lettering  

  • Expand your creative potential in using these tools in your personal work

  • Consider present day design language ( legibility, abstraction, perception, content and intention) 

  • Convert these design ideas into mix media, and image development.


  1. On this course we are focusing on writing, images, composition and abstraction .

  2. We will translate a source picture into a variety of scripts.

  3. Interpret the content of your landscape using proportion, composition, structure , balance and atmosphere.

  4. Exploring the creative possibilities will invariably lead us to abstraction and illegibility, and a sense of place.

  5. Observing nature provides a wonderful source of inspiration in this absolutely fabulous setting of Southern Italy.

  6. In the second part of the workshop our inspiration can come from local observations.

  7. We will have the opportunity to walk, work and sketch outside.


  • A selection of water colours or koh-l-noor paint palette or pencils would be ideal

  • Pencils

  • Craft Knife and small cutting mat & ruler

  • Fineliner Pens; in black and in 3 assorted line widths, including a broad marker

  • Any tools you feel you can use to write with, e.g. drawing pens, feathers, brushes, sticks etc. so all you favourite mark making tool

  • A selection of calligraphy pens eg: cola, pilot pens, ruler-pen, bamboo pens, folded pens,

  • One empty cola or beer can – give it a rinse!

  • Stick glue

  • Rubber gloves for the india ink

  • An apron (or wear old clothes)

  • A digital camera for personal records (optional)

  • Design Source eg: photos, drawings, magazine cutouts, personal sketches etc

  • a small variety of special papers from your collection like tissue paper, khadi papers, cotton, hemp or teabag paper and also collage papers

  • Denise's preferred paper and also India Ink will be provided at the Studio.

  • Please bring £20 in cash and give it to Jude Kingshott

Please note :

It is important to wear sturdy, flat, rubber-soled sensible shoes with good support. 



Included in the course:

Collection from airport Bari or Brindisi and return to airport.
(free of charge from designated flight. If we collect you from a different flight or from the train station there will be a charge.)


Fabulous Pugliese Southern Italian Food
Breakfast, a light lunch, and dinner including wine, at the Masseria. 
Transport to and from two local visits, leaving you free time to explore! Dinner is not provided on these two evenings out.
Use of all our facilities, swimming pool, bicycles etc

Room fees are as follows:

£725 twin not ensuite

£775 twin ensuite

£875 single


Meals when not at the Masseria (two)
Entry fees to monuments (if any)
Drinks whilst out of the Masseria

Supplies provided for use in the Studio. There will be a fee for materials provided