Workshop: Ruling Pen Calligraphy with Julian Waters

Event Dates:
Julian Waters
Madeleine Rousseau
Skill Level:
Intermediate: This event is limited those with experience using several writing instruments, and should have knowledge of several scripts, preferably with a strong command of at least one of those scripts.
Important: If you are unsure of your suitability for the required skill level for this event, please contact us before registering.
3 of 15 seats available (0 registration pending on waiting list)
Registration for this event has closed.

Since the great German calligrapher/type designer Fritz Poppl started using ruling pens in the 1950s, the Ruling Pen (also folded pen, cola pen etc) has shown at least two personalities: a wonderful tool for:

  1. careful drawing letters and graphics, including capitals and finished work, and
  2. for expressive textural writing and mark making.

In this 2-day introduction to the ruling pen we will explore these two sides of its personality. Be prepared to use plenty of ink and paper.

About Julian Waters

Julian Waters has been working with various kinds of ruling pens since the early 1980s. Son of calligrapher Sheila Waters and book conservator Peter Waters, Julian is also considered a protegé of the legendary calligrapher/type designer Hermann Zapf (1918–2015), who chose Julian to succeed him at the Rochester Institute of Technology, starting in the 1980s. Julian’s clients include U.S. Postal Service, National Geographic, many agencies, and memorials. His typefaces include Adobe Waters Titling Pro family and ThJefferson for Jefferson’s Monticello. In the 1990s Waters taught typography at Corcoran School of Art, in Washington, DC. In 2001, he was invited to be part of the Zapfest exhibition in San Francisco. Waters has lectured and taught workshops for calligraphers all over North and South America, Europe, Asia and Australia. He has also taught college level course at the Corcoran School of Art, Washington DC, Type@Cooper, Cooper Union, NY, and Wells College, NY. In 2016 Julian was an editor and designer for the award-winning book Waters Rising by Sheila Waters, about his father's work in saving the 100,000+ damaged rare books damaged in the 1966 Florence flood. In 2017 Julian produced the acclaimed Hermann Zapf: A Life in Letters which John Stevens called the best monograph ever made about the Zapfs. Julian now co-teaches the popular annual week-long residential calligraphy Masterclasses in Fairfield PA, started by his mother Sheila Waters, three times each year. These classes attract students from around the world. Julian and Sheila continue to share their expertise and knowledge and innumerable calligraphic treasures from a combined 110+ years of professional experience in the calligraphic arts.

Materials List:
  • Whatever ruling pens you have. Julian recommends Tim’s Pens "radius" type.
  • A selection of paper, from rough to ultra smooth bond surface or clay coated, plus normal layout paper
  • Free-flowing non-waterproof ink (test for bleeding on your papers). Color is optional
  • Rags, paper towels, apron, etc
  • Coffee mug
  • Bag lunch
Member Fees:

A discounted rate for CSO Members (this number includes the deposit fee).

This amount is payable no later than 14 days before the event. Unpaid fees may result in the forfeiture of your seat, and your deposit.

$270.00 due upon registration
Non-member Fees:

Non-members must pay the full workshop price (this number includes the deposit fee).

This amount is payable no later than 14 days before the event. Unpaid fees may result in the forfeiture of your seat, and your deposit.

$300.00 due upon registration

Parking is available to front, right, and rear of building. An elevator is available for accessibility.

We are in Alta Vista room (third floor) on Saturday.
We are in the Bank Room on Sunday. Participants will have to pack up and move their gear Saturday. We will inquire if the staff will let us move to the new room at the end of the day Saturday.