hey bernadette calligrapher

When I was small my grandmother had a book on typography called Lettering and Alphabets: 85 Complete Alphabets by J. Albert Cavanagh. Sexy title, right? Well, to me that book was fascinating. I would take it down from the built-in cabinet my grandfather created for their home and flip through its pages studying lines and curves with an eagerness that might have been a little much for a pre-teen. But the heart wants what it wants, right? You will be happy to learn that today I have my own copy. It's the perfect love story.

I followed my passion for lettering two steps behind my whole life. Growing up just north of Houston, Texas, in my family's pizza place I was exposed to small business ownership at a very early age. I think it's fair to say that seeing the creativity and freedom allowed with working for yourself played a huge part in my deciding to become a freelancer.

 That's me, age 12, working behind the counter at my family's restaurant, Pappy's Pizza.

That's me, age 12, working behind the counter at my family's restaurant, Pappy's Pizza.

I've had odd jobs, some fun and some completely awful (receptionist for a workman's comp firm was particularly painful and soul-sucking) but I've always been an artist and wanted to be an artist. I didn't go to college; I didn't have the confidence. But I have never had a non-fiction book on design, a web course on color, or an article on marketing far from my reach.

I am constantly refining my skills, and I am so joyful to have found calligraphy and brush lettering. Combining typography with my life-long love for watercolor just made sense.

As a calligrapher and illustrator I have created custom pieces for hundreds of clients and my work has been featured in multiple magazines, including Love Wins Texas Weddings and Catalyst Wedding Magazine, along with web publications including Green Wedding Shoes, Ruffled Blog and Houstonia Magazine Online. 

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Alright, now it's finally time for some random, nonsensical facts! 

I'm a big fan of British comedy, video games, tall ships, and the absurd. I'm not really a music person but I do love to listen to classical music and geeky podcasts. And while I'm hard at work in my studio I'm probably letting Frasier auto-play for the 80th time. 
Having suffered with crippling anxiety for most of my life I'm a very vocal advocate for mental health (and I'm just a vocal and honest person in general). And I'm still waiting for that dream gig that takes me out of the country for (eek!) the first time.
And you can bet I make a mean homemade pizza.

Facebook // Instagram //  hello@heybernadette.com

Selected Features & Clients include Wayfair.com, Love Wins Texas Magazine, Green Wedding Shoes,
Houstonia Magazine Online, and Catalyst Wedding Magazine.

Absolutely wonderful work!! Cannot thank Bernadette enough for this great work!!! Highly recommend.
— Julia S.
my favorite brush calligraphy supplies hey bernadette houston texas

My Preferred Supplies for Brush Calligraphy & Illustration

Watercolors by Daniel Smith for Artist Quality and Winsor & Newton's Cotman line for student quality.
Gouache Paints by Winsor & Newton
Watercolor paper by Arches and Bee Papers for atworks, and by Canson for placecards and signage - all 140 lb.
Synthetic Sable brushes by Grumbacher, size 0 round for lettering.
Synthetic Sable brush by Princeton, size 10 round for watercolor painting.
Derwent Drawing Pencils for colored pencil work.
Dick Blick & JetPens for art supplies. 
Wooden calligraphy drying racks by Jonatis on Etsy
Favorite instructional calligraphers - Molly Suber Thorpe, The Postman's Knock