Add Bounce to Your Lettering! (with free practice worksheet)

How To Add Bounce To Your Hand Lettering

(with a free practice worksheet)

Adding a bounce to your lettering can give it a modern, fun and fresh feel and it is really simple to do! You have probably seen and loved many bouncy lettering styles on social media because they look so appealing and aesthetic.

One of my favourite quotes is “Learn the rules like a pro so that you can break them like an artist” (Pablo Picasso). Bounce lettering is no different; it’s essential to learn the rules so that you can learn how to break them effectively and awesomely.

We have gone through all the basic rules in our beginner calligraphy series so if you are brand new to brush calligraphy and lettering then make sure you check them out first!

There’s a free bounce lettering for beginners practice worksheet in the resource library to use alongside this guide, so if you’re part of the fam and know the password then you can grab it from the resource library here.

If you are new, then welcome! There’s a bunch of resources, practice worksheets and guides on different kinds of lettering and brush calligraphy in the library that is free for you to download and use. You can grab the password by putting your info in here:

Sign up for the password here:

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The password to the library will be sent to your inbox straight away, as well as the occasional extra tip, freebie and helpful guide. Feel free to explore the library and use it to make your lettering awesome.

Now that you got your worksheet, let’s get into how to add bounce to your lettering.

How To Bounce Your Lettering: A Recap of Calligraphy Rules

Before we get into it, I just want to quickly recap of the calligraphy rules you will learn to break while bouncing your hand lettering:

Calligraphy lines - bouncy lettering tutorial
  1. The baseline you see is where all the letters “sit”. The letters that are tall (l, k, h, d and sometimes t and f) reach up to the ascender line
  2. The letters with the tails (g, y, z, q, p and j) reach down to the descender line.
  3. The main body of each letter sits between the baseline and the waistline, which is also called the x-height.
  4. The cap height is just below the ascender height, which shows the height for all capital letters.

Sound good so far?

  1. The baseline you see is where all the letters “sit”. The letters that are tall (l, k, h, d and sometimes t and f) reach up to the ascender line
  2. The letters with the tails (g, y, z, q, p and j) reach down to the descender line.
  3. The main body of each letter sits between the baseline and the waistline, which is also called the x-height.
  4. The cap height is just below the ascender height, which shows the height for all capital letters.

Sound good so far?

How to Bounce Your Lettering: Extending The Downstrokes

Learn bounce lettering with this handy guide - Cherry Pearl Creative
There are certain letters that end in a downstroke, such as m, n, g, h and k.

These downstrokes can either reach the baseline or the descender line (depending on the letter).

First, I want you to try and extend the last downstroke of these letters past the line it’s meant to finish on.

If you overextend the descenders it may end up looking a little bit weird, so just start by extending it just a little.

Try this on your own or by using the practice sheet from the resource library. This is the first step to making awesome bounce hand lettering.

Learn bounce lettering with this handy guide - Cherry Pearl Creative

How to Bounce Your Lettering: Extending The Ascenders

 

We want our bouncy calligraphy to bounce up and down, but so far we have made it only bounce down through the descenders. So next, we are going to bounce it upwards.

Check out all the letters that have ascenders: t, l, k, b, d, f and t

Learn bounce lettering with this handy guide - Cherry Pearl Creative
Try extending these letters slightly above the ascender line. You can use the traceable worksheet to make it easy, or you can try it for yourself.
Learn bounce lettering with this handy guide - Cherry Pearl Creative
Pause and have a look at how you did, it should look similar to this picture. Next up, we are moving on to the letters that finish at the waistline.

How to Bounce Your Lettering: The Double Waistline Letters

 

Another way to bounce your lettering is to change the height of certain strokes that usually reach the waistline. There are a few letters that have two strokes that reach the waistline and these letters are perfect to change to give your lettering some variety.

Letters like a, m, n and w.

Learn bounce lettering with this handy guide - Cherry Pearl Creative
These letters have two parts that reach the waistline so it’s easy to choose one (often the second one) and make it shorter or taller than the waistline.

Here’s the letter n as an example:

Learn bounce lettering with this handy guide - Cherry Pearl Creative
The letter can be changed to have the overturn stroke either taller or shorter than the waistline. Try it for yourself with the letters I mentioned, or use the worksheet and trace them.

Now it’s time to put them all together.

Put All The Bounce Lettering Tips Together

The best next step is choosing a word (such as your name, or the word bounce) and practice putting all these rules together.

Some words have an overabundance of adjustable letters and if you bounce each one it may look a little overwhelming.

This is where it’s up to your good judgement: don’t overdo it. Plan ahead, re-do it if you need to and take your time!

You will be bouncing your lettering beautifully in no time.

Learn bounce lettering with this handy guide - Cherry Pearl Creative

Grab The Bounce Lettering For Beginners Practice Worksheet

To help you practice making amazing bouncy lettering, make sure you grab the worksheet in the resource library. It’s got all the steps from this post already on there, ready to download and trace.

If you don’t have access to the resource library make sure you pop your details in below and grab the password. It’s a new library that’s specifically built for brush calligraphers full of worksheets and downloadable to help you get creative. Sign up here and have the password sent to your inbox straight away:

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And that’s it! You’re done, thanks for reading along and I would love to see what you create!

Keep Creating,

Pearl

Don’t forget to PIN it so you can find it easily later:

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Hey! I’m Pearl Prisk

I’m a passionate mother, worshipper and creative that would love to help you unleash your creativity to the world.

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