calligraphy art, custom client work, quotes and words

How to Do Calligraphy for a Homecoming Invitation on a Volleyball

Homecoming “Promposal” Invitation on a Pink Volleyball

so i’m gonna do something different this time…i’m gonna show you how I created this creative, cute homecoming invitation on this bright, pink volleyball that I did for a client.

ohhhhh boyyyy! This did take a lot of time: ~ 8 hours (active and non-active time) + 2 days (purchasing ball, wait time for delivery). When I say “non-active” time, it is basically the drying time of the acrylic paints, acrylic and oil-based markers in between the details of all of this awesomeness. But you know what? I WOULD DO IT AGAIN! IT WAS SOOOO MUCH FUN!

So how did I do it? Well here ya go… (Warning: This is going to be a LONG post. So if you do not want to read all of this, I’ve got a time lapse video on how I did it on my IG: ).

ya gotta deal with your client first of all, get all the details out and be TRANSPARENT of what the project will entail and how much it will ALL cost. This project I had to assess a 50% Rush fee as the client needed it ASAP and I had to purchase the ball myself per client request (It’s best though, you have the client buy the materials/supplies/product, otherwise you need to charge for it as well). my one mistake was not requiring a 50% non-refundable deposit. Luckily, the client was on point. So… lesson learned and make sure you get that deposit BEFORE any work is started. When you get all the details out and all is good, send an estimated quote in writing and get their ok.

While waiting for Amazon to deliver the pink volleyball, I started sketching in Procreate:

digital sketch using Procreate app

oh my gawsh using procreate to start really helped me out big time. I was able to do it in layers where I could do as many changes as I wanted.

Next, I headed over to one of my fave coffee shops, Angel’s Island Coffee and got some prep-work done. I did pencil sketches on tracing paper and revised and revised. FYI…this project took me 6 sketches until I was happy. (If you have to do 20 sketches, then do so!)

Finally got the pink volleyball in the mail… Once everything is good and I got the ball in hand, I started prep work quick! Primed it and painted it with a couple of two different shades of pink and some glittery paint too. I also tested my Sharpie oil-based marker on some acrylic paint swatches. (Always test your materials and supplies! You want to avoid making bigger mistakes and see if certain markers and paints are compatible together and whether they are the right ones for project. Bleeding can happen!).

I used a black Stabilo Aquarelle pencil to sketch the words and details on the ball once the paint was fully dry. I then inked the words and little details (stars on the I’s) with a black Sharpie oil-based paint pens (fine- and medium-point). Any wet medium I used, i let it mostly air dry before going on to the next step. (FYI: I did shoot it briefly with a blow dryer, but not too long because I wanted to avoid any bubbling and melting of the material).

Then details were done with Molotow Chrome silver pens (1mm, 2mm, & 4mm).

I added highlights and dots on the thicker strokes of the words in the invitation.

i traced the lines of the ball first, then added filled in waves randomly along the lines and intersections. I also used the silver pens to more sparkle to the stars. Then I took a damp sponge, lightly dipped into the bright pink acrylic paint and dabbed randomly around the ball avoiding the quote to create splatters. After all that was dry, I took one of my silver pens and re-filled some of the wavy lines over any splatters areas where I wanted to reveal the lines more.

The last details, were adding “sparkly pebble-shapes” around it.

Throughout this whole process, I kept my client in the loop, from the time I created the first sketches, receiving the volleyball, getting started, showing pictures, and then finally letting the client know I had completed the project with a photo. (and yes, a very happy client!).

I also made sure to send an email with a final invoice and let the client know that the total due had to be paid in full before delivery of the finished product. Then… ka-ching! $$$$!!! i got paid and delivered it directly to my client. (you’ll need to make sure and confirm how your client wants the final product delivered. if they want it shipped, it is up to you if you want to charge extra or do it as free shipping).

Lastly, ask your client to leave you a review. Or they can send you an email about how satisfied they were and ask if it’s ok if you can use their email review to post on your website and on Google Maps. this will serve as proof of you doing the project and will show off what you can do for a future client.

How was that for an explanation of my process? I told you it was long…but again… I would it again and again!

And oh, I heard from my client:

“The ball was a big HIT with his girl and her family! ” – P.T.

No wonder why I love doing art.

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