Hand Lettering ‘Friday’ Using Just Dots

How to hand-letter a word with ink using just dots.


Who said you need clear lines for hand lettering? Let’s try a little variation with dots.
I have almost never tried hand lettering before, but I love watching hand-lettering artists. I find their art mesmerising, and I confess that I love the process (watching them drawing letters) as much as I love the result, if not more.

For today’s project, I tried my hand at hand lettering the word ‘Friday’ (guess what day it was …). Then I inked it using just … dots. And I even added a gradient effect for good measure. Ideally, a work of patience to be accomplished while listening to a great podcast!




For this project, as in the drawing of a cat using just dots, I used very simple tools:

  • a graphite pencil

  • an eraser

  • a black pen.



Step 1 – a quick hand-lettered sketch with pencil

irst, I began with a very quick sketch, so I drew the word ‘Friday’ with pencil, following a modern version of the Cancelleresca formata, an Italian cursive first developed in the 16th century.

And then, when I felt the letters were OK … I erased almost everything. Don’t be afraid! You know by now that this is something I often do (for example, with this breton shirt)!  I erased, but lightly, so that I could still see where the letters had been previously drawn, but there were no visible construction lines on my drawing. 

In the short video above, this runs from 00:00 to 01:09. It actually took me 4 minutes.


Step 2 – a more detailed hand-lettered drawing with pencil

Then I drew the letters again, one by one, with more details this time. I tried to be especially careful with parallel lines, making sure that the vertical lines, of course, but also the oblique lines were parallel to one another and consistent between the letters.

In the short video above, this runs from 01:09 to 02:09. It actually took me 7 minutes.


Step 3 – adding the dots with black pen

Last, but not least, I spent 30 minutes drawing tiny little dots to fill the letters.

In fact, it was a three-step process:

  • First, I outlined the letters with dots. In the short video above, this runs from 02:09 to 02:57

  • Then I filled the letters evenly with more dots. In the short video above, this runs from 02:57 to 03:26.

  • Lastly, I filled the letters once more with even more dots, but only in the upper half, to create a gradient effect. In the short video above, this runs from 03:26 to 04:06.

In the short video above, this runs from 02:09 to 04:06. It actually took me 30 minutes.


And voilà!

I love this imperfect dotted word. I might leave it in my sketchbook – another great page! – or maybe I will use it in my diary, journaling, weekly to-do lists … (are you into bullet journaling?).

Anyway, patient work is very rewarding. This took a little more time but it was worth the effort.

I hope you have enjoyed this post. As always, I do not pretend to be a teacher, a seasoned artist or an expert in anything. I am just a very motivated learner who finds a deep joy in regular art practice.



The finished drawing | Hand Lettering ‘Friday’ Using Just Dots, by The Daily Atelier

The finished drawing is ready to frame or gift | Hand Lettering ‘Friday’ Using Just Dots, by The Daily Atelier


If you liked this post, you will almost certainly like some of these other projects with ink. Enjoy!