Program Meetings

Fall programs will be held online on the Zoom platform. WCG members will receive Zoom links closer to the dates. (Don't miss emails from the Guild: put [email protected] in your contacts or address book.)

Presentations will begin at 7:30 pm ET but attendees are invited to log on at 7 pm for conversation and assistance with technical issues, if needed.

December program
Wed. Dec 7, 7/7:30 pm on Zoom:
“A Christmas Carol: A Hand-lettered Manuscript Over Three Years in the Making”

with Maryanne Grebenstein

Maryanne GrebensteinIt took Maryanne Grebenstein over three years to hand letter the 29,000 words contained in Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. Please join Maryanne as she discusses the plan, the process, the ups and downs, and the surprises she encountered while creating her manuscript.

“Creating a one-of-a-kind manuscript containing 143 pages of completely hand-lettered text can be considered nothing short of a labor of love. And for me, that’s exactly what this project was. I have always loved this story and had in mind that someday I would like to create a hand-lettered manuscript of it.

“Several years ago, I learned that The Morgan Library in New York (the owner of Charles Dickens’ original manuscript) had published a little book containing a facsimile of the manuscript alongside a transcription of it. Perfect! I could use Dickens’ actual words – in the raw – to create my manuscript. My hope was to keep this as close to Dickens’ voice as possible, so I transcribed it verbatim. I began working on it in March 2016 and completed it in January 2021.

“Since there are over 29,000 words in the book, I knew that most of the manuscript would be spreads of all black text. And I did not want to use traditional illustrations in my manuscript (no images of Marley’s face in Scrooge’s door knocker for this project!). I wanted to illustrate with words. I selected passages from the text that I thought were particularly poignant or meaningful and highlighted that text by standing it on a page all its own with color and gold decoration to emphasize its meaning.”

Maryanne Grebenstein is a professional calligrapher and owner of The Abbey Studio in Marblehead, MA ( She studied under Sheila Waters, Jeanyee Wong, Robert Boyajian, and other notable calligraphers. She teaches workshops in calligraphy, manuscript gilding, and layout in her Marblehead studio/shop. She is a former teacher at North Bennet Street School (, and a former Adjunct Professor at Massachusetts College of Art ( She is the author of Calligraphy: A Course in Hand Lettering and Calligraphy Bible, both published by Watson-Guptill.

Barry Morentz

Jean Larcher

Above: Barry Morentz lettered Shakespeare's narrative poem Venus & Adonis (lines 505-510) for WCG's 45th Anniversary Scripsit. Right: Alphabet by WCG member Jean Larcher for the new Speedball Handbook 23rd edition.

Highlights of past meetings

are held monthly via Zoom at 7pm, generally on the 3rd Wed.
2023: 1/12 (Th) and these Wednesdays:
2/15, 3/15, 4/19 AND 6PM ON 5/17

At WCG Board meetings the annually elected Board of Directors develops and carries out Guild policies as well as leads the committees of volunteers that prepare Guild activities. Many board members are relatively new to calligraphy, but devoted in their interest. Contact President Marilyn Davis to find out how you can help the Guild grow and/or if you wish to observe a meeting.

January program
Wed. Jan 18, 2023, 7/7:30 pm on Zoom:
Experiments in Blackletter
with Tamer Ghoneim

Tamer GhoneimJoin Blackletter calligraphic artist Tamer Ghoneim for a fun, collaborative and light-hearted dive into the wonderful world of Blackletter calligraphy. Tamer will explore some basics and show the incredible variety of creative ways Blackletter can be used. From 3D illusions to mind-bending geometric designs, he will share some of his most popular creations and the stories behind them.

During a live demonstration Tamer encourages WCG members to letter along with him, so have pens, paper and ink a/o color media handy.

Tamer's favorite lettering and creative tools:
Email: [email protected]

Tamer Ghoneim is a professional calligraphy artist and instructor, specializing in blackletter and gothic calligraphy styles, including modern interpretations and abstracts designs.

My goal is to encourage people of all ages and skill levels to learn the rewarding art of blackletter calligraphy. I believe in using a positive, fun, and supportive teaching style that encourages and motivates students while learning, and inspires them to find joy and pride in their creative abilities.


Queen Elizabeth dinner menu

February program
Wed. Feb 1 & 8, 7/7:30 pm on Zoom:
25 Years of Presidential Calligraphy
with Pat Blair, Lee Ann Clark and Rick Paulus

In a zoom presentation exclusive to WCG members, see how White House calligraphy has evolved during the past quarter century. White House Chief Calligraphers (and WCG members) Rick Paulus [1998-2006], Pat Blair [2007-2017] and Lee Ann Clark [2017-current] discuss the design and lettering of invitations, menus, place cards, proclamations and presidential awards.
[image: portion of State Dinner menu honoring Queen Elizabeth's visit to the WH; calligraphy by Pat Blair]


March program
Wed. March 1, 7/7:30 pm on Zoom:
How I became Scribe C of the Beowulf Manuscript (and what I learned in the process)
with Cheryl Jacobsen

The Beowulf Manuscript is the earliest epic written in the English vernacular, but few have looked at the manuscript with the experience of a working scribe. Cheryl Jacobsen will talk about her commission to recreate the renowned 140-page manuscript stroke by stroke in English minuscules—and a page-by-page translation in modern English—on goat skin. Cheryl shares insight on how the medieval scribes may have been thinking and working as they did their jobs. She also talked about some future projects and challenges they pose, such as working on papyrus.

Cheryl Jacobsen is Adjunct Assistant Professor of Lettering at the University of Iowa Center for the Book. She teaches several semester-long calligraphy classes as well as a hands-on history class analyzing historical manuscripts. She is the author of “A Modern Scribe Views Scribes of the Past” in Scraped, Stroked, and Bound: Materially Engaged Readings of Medieval Manuscripts (Brepols 2013). She also runs a freelance studio creating all sorts of exciting modern calligraphic projects and assemblage art. She specializes in organizing things visually and beautifully whether it be words or objects.


April program
Thursday. April 20, 7/7:30 pm on Zoom:
Calligraphic Wanderlust: the path he's followed
with Yves Letermes

Internationally acclaimed Belgian calligrapher Yves Letermes promises an entertaining talk about that thing we all have in common: our love for beautiful letters. He'll share plenty of pictures to illustrate his views and thoughts about the path he followed, the problems he encountered, the things and persons that inspired him, the worries that keep haunting him, the things he really loves to do, his thoughts on calligraphy and its practice, etc.

Sheila WatersAnne Lane

Former WCG logos by Sheila Waters (l) and Anne Lane.

Julian Waters



Left: Fractur lettering by Julian Waters


Right: Julian Waters' demo for Blackletter workshop


Below: Peter Thornton

Julian Waters


Peter Thornton


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