Lettering artist Jason Carne is the creator of a fantastic resource called Lettering Library. The library found at letteringlibrary.com is full of old books that are no longer in print which Jason has collected over time. I am so excited to share this resource with you as there isn’t anything else quite like it in the lettering world, and I am sure you will want to visit time and time again.
The benefits of Lettering Library
Collecting books that are no longer in print can often be quite costly, especially books that are over one hundred years old and very rare. It can also be very difficult to track down old lettering books that were printed outside of the country you live in without paying a small fortune. Lettering Library overcomes the barriers of cost and location by providing high quality copies of the books from Jason’s collection, which can be downloaded at only a fraction of the price Jason would have paid for the originals.
Prices are as low as $1 and average around $3 or $4 for many of the books. There are over 70 books currently in the library, with at least another 50 lined up to be added, and I’m sure that number will only continue to grow as Jason adds to his physical collection. The books range in topic, and cover things like drawing ornate lettering, drawing alphabets, monograms, sign painting, penmanship and more. You can also get a preview of each book for free, which gives you a suitable taster of what you’ll find inside of each book.
If you take a look at somewhere like eBay and search for antique lettering books, I think you’ll soon appreciate how valuable this collection of books is. I had a look myself, from the UK, and could only find two antique lettering books which started in price at around £40 / $70. This showed me how expensive it would be to build my own collection of vintage lettering books, and also how time consuming it would be to try and source them.
Why some old books?
By this point you might be wondering what’s so special about a bunch of old books? In most cases the content of books dating back to the early 1900’s and even to the 1800’s will be very outdated. The answer to this is very simple though, many lettering techniques and methods will still be the same and relevant to what was used one hundred years ago. Yes the language might be a little dated, and no there definitely wasn’t digitisation, but the primary techniques for drawing letters by hand won’t have changed too much. The majority of the books in Lettering Library were written and created when hand lettering was still in it’s prime, and when hand lettering was a skill that many people possessed.
Lets hit those books!
No matter where you are in your lettering journey whether you’re a complete beginner or lettering pro, I highly recommend having a look at the library. I’m sure you will find something of value, be it something to educate you, something to inspire you, or maybe even both of these things.
Lettering Library logo © Jason Carne / Lettering Library