Member Feature: Heather Kopf

We are excited to introduce you to SSLetters member Heather Kopf! Heather has been joining us for meetings over the last year, and we love the positive vibes she brings with her. Get to know Heather and her lettering in this month’s member profile, and meet her IRL as she hosts our September doodle session!

This year we are starting to invite members to host meetings in lieu of having our co-founders run each one. We think it’ll be a great way for our members to get to know each other better! Get in touch with co-founders Christy and Amina if you are interested in hosting a meeting! It entails getting out supplies, welcoming members, starting off introductions, and keeping the good vibes going at our meetings.

How did you discover hand lettering?

I’ve kind of done a version of it since I was little, playing around with letter forms. But I started seeing it more and more on social media early 2016 and decided it might be a fun focus, so I jumped right on in!

How long have you been hand lettering?

Officially, since mid 2016.

Describe your hand lettering style.

Ooh, that’s a good question. If we’re going with my base style I’d say it’s a modified calligraphy style. It’s a little more bouncy, includes some mixed script, less formal, etc.

What are your favorite tools to hand letter with and ways to display hand lettering?

I love going back to the beginning and using a good old pencil and paper to jot some ideas, practice some styles, etc. I usually use an H drafting pencil for sketching my piece first. I of course also love my Tombow Fudenosuke pens because they’re so durable, as well as Marvy Uchida Le Plume pens, and Rhodia pads. For digital I go with my iPad and Procreate, particularly if I’m doing any foil prints. Those are my favorite ways to display, there’s something just so delicate and lovely about a foil print!

How did you find SSLetters?

I always saw online friends getting together with other letterers and searched for local groups to visit. It just so happens that I work in Silver Spring and came across SSLetters, it was perfect!

What brings you back to SSLetters?

I love the community! It’s always so nice to hang out with others who have the same interests as you.

What was your favorite SSLetters meeting that you attended and why?

I really enjoyed where we made inspirational cards to leave around the area last winter. That was such a fun way to brighten someone else’s day and get a chance to play around with some different styles.

What inspires your lettering?

My mental health. I tend to letter supportive messages when I’m in a funk or don’t know what else to write. Additionally, I’d say something I’ve experienced whether it’s something someone said at work, a podcast, a tv show or a movie. I will jot it down on my phone to work on later!

Do you have any hand lettering projects that you're working on?

I started “Calligraphy for Mental Health” last year. It’s a passion project that’s turned into workshops to teach others the positive effects of hand lettering and calligraphy on our mental health. It’s been something that has allowed me to talk about my own struggles and released me from shame about my anxiety, as well as allowed me to share my joy of lettering and how it’s helped me tremendously!

What do you do outside of hand lettering?

I work in the field of brain injury which holds a close place to me. But I’m also a huge science nerd and love to learn about things from space, to disease, to geology... you name it and I probably went down some black hole researching it. 😋

What is your favorite letter, number or character to letter?

I’m biased for the H. I love the idea that in a written font it can be very rigid with straight lines to something super curly and delicate.

What is your most challenging letter, number or character to letter?

S’s. I don’t know what it is, but for some reason I find S’s are one of my most erased and redrawn when I’m sketching.

Thank for sharing, Heather! We are excited to have her host our September meeting at Bump n Grind on Tuesday, September 10th from 6-8pm. See you then!