It’s time for another iHanna postcard swap. (You still have time to sign up.) Alcohol inks are still providing a lot of fun for me, so I thought, “Well, that’s what I’ll do.” But I changed my mind. I decided to write some haiku, then use them for the image on the postcard.
Here’s the haiku: Clouds pull down the sky / Fragrant with dust and creosote / Rain in Phoenix!
I chose a simple Strathmore postcard, drew lines on it, about half an inch tall, using a Pitt (waterproof) pen. Then I hand-lettered my haiku on the lines, filling each line, not matter where I was in the word. No hyphens, just fill the line, then drop down to the next line.
I printed in all capitals, because the look is even and you get great spaces both in the letters and between them to color. This technique is not original, I know that Gustav Klimt used a similar technique in his images of Adele Bloch-Bauer. Other, modern calligraphers who use this technique are Carol Pallesen, Helen Chu, and Flora Chang.
Some spaces are left white to allow a little breathing room around all that color. But I did want to add enough color to make my postcard look like both art and writing. Here’s the final card.
Haikus are easy to write and use, but you can also use a favorite quote from a book. And yes, they do make the perfect way to send your Stow-Away Poetry out into the world. (Join the Stow-Away Poetry page on Facebook and post yours, too.)
—Quinn McDonald is a writer who teaches writing. She is studying poetry therapy.