Sheila WatersSheila Waters

5 Days
No Supply Fee

Instructor Bio

Born in England, Sheila began formal studies in drawing, painting, graphic design, calligraphy and lettering at the age of 16 at the Medway College of Art, UK, then at the Royal College of Art, for her masters degree and Fellowship of the Society of Scribes & Illuminators in 1951. After twenty years of commissions for publishers, libraries, museums and private collectors, she immigrated to the USA in 1971 with her husband Peter Waters (to be Chief of Conservation, Library of Congress) and three sons, Julian Waters being the eldest. 1976 she was founding president of the Washington Calligraphers Guild. Best known for her wall panel “Roundel of the Seasons” and illuminated manuscript of Under Milk Wood by Dylan Thomas (the latter owned by the Sir J.Paul Getty Wormsley Library, UK), she continues to lecture, teach workshops and masterclasses. Her now classic textbook, Foundations of Calligraphy, was published in 2006 and reprinted in 2008 and 2014.

Sheila Waters

Class Description

After studying various examples of 9th century Carolingian writing with magnifying glasses, including actual-size photographs of a manuscript owned by the Getty museum, students will change archaic elements and modernize from historical sources for themselves, thus learning the underlying principles of modernizing any historical style. After trying Sheila’s version of Carolingian that she developed in the 1960’s for a commissioned text of an illustrated manuscript of Under Milk Wood by Dylan Thomas, the class will review and work on suitable Uncial-based capitals to match with the minuscules. This study will culminate in designing a piece in Carolingian and Uncials, at least to the stage of a final draft.




Supply List

Smooth practice paper
Non-bleeding, non-waterproof ink
A selection of gouache
A variety of broad-edged nib sizes from wide to narrow, with reservoirs, preferably straight-barreled pen holders
Drawing board or portable desk
Sharp soft and hard pencils
Magnifying glass etc.
Favorite “good” paper for a project
A chosen text suitable for these hands


Sheila Waters Sheila Waters Sheila Waters

Class Catalog

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