Member Feature: Nora Simon
"You don't choose the hand lettering life - hand lettering chooses you." - Nora Simon
Nora Simon is one of our favorite artists / hand letterers / amazing people that gives us all the neon feels each month at our doodle sessions. Nora has been joining us since the dawn of SSLetters, and we've known her bright hand lettering style since even before SSLetters was born. The first time I (Amina) ever spent time with Nora was to screen print posters for Fenton Street Market, a design that Nora hand lettered, and we did a two-color neon printing on neon paper. It was amazing.
Nora is one of our go-to people when we are kicking around an idea. She gets stuff done. She helped us screen print a batch of tote bags, our first round of SSLetters swag years ago. Most recently, she designed our new promo postcards, an informal invitation to join us at SSLetters in Wes Anderson style. A perfect match for our unofficial society.
Read about Nora and her hand lettering style in our *first!* member feature below!
How long have you been hand lettering?
As far back as I can remember! One of my favorite things to do as a kid was draw and hand letter overly elaborate birthday cards for my friends.
Describe your hand lettering style.
I like to experiment and try lots of different styles but I'm sure my letters have an overall "look" - I'm just not sure how to describe.
What are your favorite tools to hand letter with and ways to display hand lettering?
I'm all about pens and paper when I want to do something quick. If I've got time I like to screenprint, paint and use paper collage as well. Recently I've been making art just for the fun of it and once in a while I'll make print reproductions of my favorite pieces.
What brings you back to SSLetters?
Being around people that I can nerd out with about pens and other artsy things. It's nice to know there are other like-minded people out there that find hand lettering fun.
What was your favorite SSLetters meeting that you attended and why?
I love the "The Random Acts of Lettering" meeting. I like knowing that the cards I made might brighten someone's day.
What inspires your lettering?
I try to find inspiration in lots of things but my mind always comes back to nature, food, bright colors, random objects that I find appealing, quotes, and cool stuff I see while traveling. Oh, and dogs.
Do you have any hand lettering projects that you're working on? Tell us about it! Or any projects you have done in the past to share? (Could be drawing challenges, hand lettered signs, etc)
Right now I'm finishing up this year's Inktober challenge (a new drawing for every day of October). Last spring I embarked on a 100 day art challenge which I named "100 Days of Making Cool Shit". Every day I made a new piece of art and then posted it to Instagram, no matter how bad it turned out. It was a way to get myself back in gear after neglecting art for a long time. In the process I discovered some new mediums and a lot about my own personal style. Since finishing the project I've been trying to keep the momentum going and still make art every day. Even if I don't succeed it's nice knowing that I've made art a priority in my life once again.
What do you do outside of hand lettering? Any special interests?
Being out in nature and exploring new places, whether it's within my own neighborhood or in another country. I also love trying new and interesting foods.
What is your favorite letter, number or character to letter?
L's are super fun because of how many flourishes you can add to them
What is your most challenging letter, number or character to letter?
I steer clear of upper case cursive G's.
Thanks so much for sharing, Nora! You can follow Nora's work & adventures on Instagram @noramakes