I am currently offering the following classes. For further details or to discuss the feasibility of a class for your organization, please email lily.yee.sloan@gmail.com. If you have an idea for a topic, let’s talk.

Freewheeling: Design Without Fear

All skill levels — 2- to 4-day workshop

ˈfrēˌ(h)wēliNG/ (adjective) characterized by a disregard for rules or conventions; unconstrained or uninhibited

A Ride on the Wild Side
You are learning a lettering hand. Or you’ve been clocking miles and miles of pen practice. Or you’ve been lettering for years and your calligraphy gears are grinding. What’s up ahead? Maybe it’s time for a side trip off the beaten path. How about a walk in the wilderness? A hike in the Himalayas? You choose. The path is different for every traveller.

Before you set your GPS for the next mile, spend a few days freewheeling. No pre-planning. Get in. Buckle up. Come for a ride on the wild side. You drive, I’ll guide.

Sometimes you need to get lost before you are found.

How lost?
Lettering requires discipline. The tight approach to letterforms can creep into the way you design. Set aside this tight approach for a less formal one. Let loose on design but continue to build the strength of your letterforms.



Map Your Adventure
Choose a text as a starting point for your journey. Select your own text or one from my collection. Come play with familiar and funky tools—try new ones! Through guided exercises, you’ll use handwriting, then switch to your non-dominant hand, make continuous letters, repeat marks in a round, colour the counters. cross borders. Can’t resist? (Yes, we’re using resist techniques.)

Snip the bits you like. Hide the bits you don’t. Now you’re creating pages for a book. You’ll have enough material to bind into two accordion books.

Caution: play can be addictive!

Pack your sense of adventure. I’ll help you unpack your wild side. You’ll be freewheeling before you know it!




Willow: a Monoline Classic

All skill levels — 2- to 3-day workshop

Learn Willow
Willow, a hand designed by Scottish architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh (1868-1928), was made popular during the art nouveau period in the late 19th century. Art nouveau was a style of art, design, and architecture that used curving lines and shapes evocative of leaves and flowers.

This classic monoline alphabet is  still in vogue today and can be used for headings or stacked for texture.

Whether you are relatively new to lettering or you want to polish your tarnished skills, the Willow hand will ease you into drawing letters with confidence while sharpening your critical eye to see shape and line. You’ll use colour to tint the spaces between words as a painless way to learn about spacing.



Learn Page Layout
Along the way, novice and veteran lettering artists will pick up valuable studio and layout tips as you develop a text page using your new-found letters.

Design an Apron
Need more to master Willow? Extend the class to spend a third day scribing text on a pre-made cotton apron to create a washable, wearable work of art.

Lettering on fabric is slow and deliberate, allowing you time to get a strong grasp of the letter shapes. Textile markers adapt to calligraphy and are easy to use, especially on a monoline alphabet.

Long after the workshop is over, you’ll be showing off your hand lettering while cooking in the kitchen, grilling at the barbecue, or painting in the studio.


Washable, Wearable Words

All skill levels — 2- to 3-day workshop

Learn Brush Lettering
This chisel-edged brush style is inspired by Eliza Holliday. If you have never lettered with a flat brush, this style will be an excellent introduction to using the tool. After practising on paper, you’ll move on to fabric.



Scribe on Fabric
Lettering on textile is slow and deliberate, allowing you time to practice using the brush and to get a strong grasp of the letter shapes.

Quilters looking for one-of-a-kind fabric might consider incorporating brush lettering into their next quilt design.

In class, you’ll transform a plain cotton apron using texture and text.

Letter using one colour and tint with another to make your letters pop. Letter the alphabet as a border embellishment; highlight a quote as a central design; or, for the adventurous, use letters as surface texture in an all-over pattern. After all that practice, the chisel-edged brush letters will definitely be integrated in your muscle memory!

Brush lettering on a cotton apron. This workshop explores the possibilities and leads you to search out other washable, wearable items to showcase your chisel-edged brush letters.