I have been performing calligraphy since 1980 and digital arts + design since the mid 1990s.
MY INTERNATIONALLY FEATURED WORKS
Bon Expose – My work has been featured on Bon Expose, an outstanding Illustration, Photography and Design Website curated by Leodor Selenier out of France. Leodor is an internationally known Graphic Designer and Illustrator with close to 3 million followers. This is an enormous honor for me to be featured on Bon Expose and through her Google+ account at: https://bonexpose.com/featured/steve-czajka/
LetterCults – It is also a great honor for me to be recognized on the same page as international calligrapher Niels Shoe Meulman for my work titled Zen at: www.lettercult.com/archives/3672/9 (scroll)
EP Daily TV – I was interviewed on a popular international TV show. The interview was about graphic design software and my role as editor for GIMP Magazine. Watch my TV interview at: http://epdaily.tv/category/all/type-of/shows/ep-daily/
ABOUT THIS SITE
Welcome to Toronto Calligraphy, a website owned and operated by Calligrapher Steve Czajka. The goal of this website is to promote online calligraphy courses and digital arts learning to everyone around the world. I plan to offer
- More live and video based calligraphy classes in Toronto and around the world
- More digital arts + design courses
- FREE tips and tricks for calligraphers
- Posts on interesting calligraphy + design projects I am working on
- A gallery of calligraphic works
- Designer Typefaces
- A calligraphy publication (magazine or book) (coming soon)
Please subscribe / follow this website. You can unsubscribe at any time.
THIS SITE IS NOT ASSOCIATED WITH THE CALLIGRAPHIC ARTS GUILD OF TORONTO.
- Calligraphy + design training
- Graphic design software training (GIMP, Inkscape, Scribus)
- Calligraphic art (for framing / canvas stretch)
- Graphic design
- Brochure layout
- Magazine layout / desktop publishing
- Brand identity / product identity
- Business presentations
- Type development
- Courseware development / Film / Audio / Video Editing
My work has appeared in various applications such as
- Full size wall murals
- Logo designs
- Website graphics
- Poems/music lyrics
- Book covers
- Program covers
- Digital wallpapers
- Stock Photography / Stock Images, and
- Various other creative uses of calligraphy and digital art.
Each calligraphy piece starts as an authentic pen and ink hand penned work, then they are scanned and processed with an array of digital effects. My digital environment includes packages such as: Adobe Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator, Premiere, Inkscape, Scribus, GIMP and others.
MY OPEN SOURCE DESIGN SOFTWARE COURSES
On this site I also offer Open Source Software courses and tutorials. These tutorials are intended to help others to learn how the various pieces were created. Many of the techniques I have learned have been from others, and I hope to share back into this incredible digital arts open community.
MY LOCATION & CAREER
I am a resident of Mississauga, Ontario, Canada. I am a Geographic Information Systems Professional by day, and do freelance calligraphy and digital art in my spare time. My calligraphy was influenced by the training and works of: professional calligrapher Anthony Hostovecky and professional sign painter Stan Czajka (my father). My career involves
- GIS mapping & cartography
- Data management
- Design and visualization
- Complex story-telling
- Project & portfolio management and
- Other areas.
MY ROLE AS MANAGING EDITOR FOR GIMP MAGAZINE
GIMP is an amazing image editing software package similar to Adobe® Photoshop®, but licensed as free and open source for the Mac, PC, and Linux operating systems. The latest version of GIMP (2.8) has been downloaded over 6.5 Million times in just two months, so this is a huge community of skilled and passionate users.
GIMP Magazine features the amazing works created from this world wide community. Photography, digital arts, graphic arts, web design, industrial design, tips & tricks, step by step tutorials, master classes, help desk questions, product reviews and so much more are showcased and explored in this quarterly publication. This publication is available for free and is licensed Creative Commons CC-AT-SA 2.5.
My role as managing editor for GIMP Magazine is to provide editorial direction in the stories and content that we feature in our magazine. And this is a difficult role considering the amazing content that we receive from our community. I provide overall coordination with the project and within our team of seven, including internal and external communications. I run the social media accounts for this project. And the most fun part of my role on this project is providing art direction, and layout services (in Scribus, like InDesign®). I am part of an amazing team of people who produce this publication voluntarily, and we are having fun doing this! I am also connected to incredibly talented artists and photographers from all over the world. Who knows what this will lead to? At the time of writing this (July 2015) GIMP Magazine has roughly 20,000 followers and well over 5,000,000 views.
Watch me on EP Daily TV! – http://epdaily.tv/all/type-of/previews/hands-on-with-gimp/
MY FORMER ROLE WITH THE CALLIGRAPHIC ARTS GUILD OF TORONTO
I was a member of a non-profit group called the Calligraphic Arts Guild of Toronto. I was a part of the team as the Communications and Marketing Committee lead. This was an exciting role for me as I was surrounded by excellence in calligraphy and design.
I also provided calligraphy training both in a live and online setting. I recognized the need for online calligraphy training where people can learn at their own pace and keep a video record of how each letter is formed. I plan to evolve this to the next level towards virtual training / mentoring.
MY ARTWORK LICENSES
I greatly foster and encourage the use of the creative commons license. Many of my pieces are available under a creative commons license, while some may be copyright (for specific reasons). If you want to use one of my pieces as stock photography on a website, or blog, etc… I can upon request provide you with a special license and an unsigned image. I can also provide graphic artists with high resolution .PSD, .XCF or .SVG source files.
My complete license information can be found on my flickr site at https://www.flickr.com/photos/steveczajka. There are many variants to this type of license. Images I use from others are fully attributed in each blog post (or on the image itself), so please read and understand the creative commons license system at: http://creativecommons.org. My approach is to share as much as I can where possible.
Interested in having some custom digital arts / calligraphy work done for your company or a gift for a friend / loved one? Maybe some website graphics, corporate certificates, album cover designs, poems, lyrics, business logos? Send me an email and I can zip back a quote asap. I can send you high quality images that are professionally printed on high quality photo paper and optionally framed. Contact me at https://torontocalligraphyguild.org/contact
Enjoy, I leave you with some testimonials. Thanks so much for your comments… Each and every one. I greatly appreciate when someone takes the time out of their day to comment on my work!
Susan Murtaugh , Retired Artist, Chicago, Ill
I have always admired good calligraphers, and you are a great one.
Mark Lurz, Calligrapher
Steve, this is a very nice piece [Circular Calligraphy Border]. I like your Gothic C and the Arabic look of the border. Together with the textured yellow background, it reminds me of the work of Wissam Shawkat as featured in the last issue of “Letter Arts Review”.
Wow beautiful done!!
This is wonderful!!
Jane Farr, Calligrapher
Great work Steve!
Jane Farr, Calligrapher
Congratulations on your blogiversary Steve! These letters are beautiful – so crisp!
Chirag D. Shah, Photographer
Awesome! I love what you’ve done with it!
This is so awesome Thank you for sharing
Great job. Very beautiful
… Great inspiration, Thank you!
…Great use of textures.
Molossus, who says Life Imitates Doodles
Calliartist, Fine Artist
Thanks, Steve, for taking the time to explain.
Great work on both, well done. Have a good Canada Day and keep smiling.
Hi, I’m an admin for a group called Real Magic – Contest : CHAIR, and we’d love to have this added to the group!
Nice work. “You Can Make Me Smile” 🙂
Ate My Crayons
Great Gimp tutorials… Your site is wonderful.. some truly cool contributions for Gimp users.
Eddi van W.
…Great work Steve, thanks for linking your image of you using it!
Skyeshell, fine artist
Truly a wonderful piece of work. Nice tutorial Steve!
Rolf Steinort, Photographer, Open Source Podaster
What a wonderful surprise, thank you very much! I very much like your combination of digital hand craft and digital editing. It’s a bridge between both worlds and gets the best out of both.
Ray Ritchie, Calligrapher
I love this, Steve! Wonderful lettering, and nice choice of photo, as well.
We’d love to have this added to the group! Awesome work! Thank you for choosing my texture & for showing me 🙂
Super work ! Bravo
Jason Castle, Typographer
Hope Rik [Rik Emmett, Musician] gets to see it. Great tribute and beautiful calligraphy. Thank you for sharing the memories and the art skills. Cheers!
Mark Lurz, Calligrapher, Toronto
Diane Iannuzziello, Calligrapher
Love it….this is absolutely beautiful Steve!!!
Karen Jewell, Calligrapher
Awesome, emotional work, love to see it!
I think you sell yourself a bit short Steve, much appreciated anyway, thanks for the excellent blog…Phil (Perth-Western Australia)
Hi I have watched many tutorials about GIMP but YOU are now my favorite!
Beautiful work throughout your portfolio. Love the rugged detail in your lettering.
…The work looks excellent
Very elegant and neat…you are a master of it [calligraphy]
Very cool, Steve.
Very nice art work!
Very nice work, Steve. An award certificate the awardees can be proud of.
Very, very nice.
I’m not an easy person to impress, but this is nicely done.
Wow, that is Great. Love it
Great imagery and lettering, thanks for sharing this.
I really do like your work. I browsed your stuff and it looks great.
Love your tutorials Steve.Keep them coming
Awesome work, Steve! Good job!
Every single work of yours is just wonderful!
Giuseppe Salerno, Typographer
It’s so nice… all of it 🙂
That is freaking awesome.[Letters Interacting]
That [Solitude] is beautiful Steve. I love your calligraphy. The colors and flowers are great and I love the background. Kudos!
That [Solitude] is gorgeous and very professional looking.
Mónika Germann, Calligrapher
This work is truly inspiring ¡¡¡¡ Thank you ¡¡¡¡
Very nice composition Steve [Solitude], and congrats to another fine piece of artwork. I love this style.
[Angels and Demons] Love it, love it, love it!
[Twenty Third Psalm]I absolutely love your work and this is my favorite.
Great job! I love your works, specially “Gothic Textura Tall and Narrow”
Viewing your blog has my head spinning (and clicking) with possibilities. Thanks for the inspiration.
Alan Shapiro, Professional Photographer
Great stuff +Steve Czajka Had a quick look around and like your style. I’m an advertising chief creative officer during the day and will add you to my resource file for the next time I have a need for handrawn letterforms. Will also share with my teams. Thanks.
[Digital Arts Package Design] Very nice work!
Kathy McCreedy, Artist
Found on flickr, by Steve Czajka… lovely sentiment, written out beautifully!
[Letters Interacting] Stunning.
[Letters Interacting] Stunning
Great stream ,inspiring work
These separate typefaces are all within the texutra family and they fit together, by mixing capitals, lower case letters, special characters, and even a new edition called swirls. All of these perfectly fit together. [Textura Tall and Narrow]
Albion Europe ApS
Great work 🙂
[Letters Interacting] very good work! Congrats!!
[May 2012 Calendar] Great work. Definitely punchy 🙂
[Letters Interacting] Excellent!
[Letters Interacting] powerful lettering!
Calliartist, Artist / Calligrapher
[Solitude] beautiful! I’m inspired!
Manuel Corradine, Typographer
[Letters Interacting] Very nice work!
[June 2012 Calendar] …you have such a great eye for design.
[June 2012 Calendar] Beautiful work yet again.
[June 2012 Calendar] Everything I’ve ever seen of yours, starting with your Amber series has been a work of art.
That is jaw-droppingly beautiful. [Letters Interacting]
[September 2012 Calendar] So beautiful! i love the contrast between that soft, transparent text layer and the big white text.
[September 2012 Calendar] I love the shading, grungyness to the lettering in September.
[GIMP Magazine] The magazine is truly a work of art in itself!
This is really excellent stuff, Steve. Love the Magazine, and the work your doing. [GIMP Magazine – Issue 4 Director’s Cut Video]
That was beautiful. I really enjoyed it. [GIMP Magazine – Issue 4 Director’s Cut Video]
David A. Lucas
..I was totally immersed. thank you [GIMP Magazine – Issue 4 Director’s Cut Video]
The music just goes so well with the images, perfect fit. [GIMP Magazine – Issue 4 Director’s Cut Video]
Ferdinandus, d.s. ,Calligrapher
Beautiful project, Steve, as all you do. Happy New Year and thanks for sharing.
In a way, the effect looks like edge-lit etched glass. Great work!
Very nice, Steve! This jumped out at me on Pinterest, and I followed it back to you! [The Raven]
WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW – this is amazing calligraphy!!!! I have tried a little bit of the knot work and it is hard for me. It requires a lot of concentration and gets very tedious. I have a lot of respect for people can do it! Wonderful WORK!!!! [Celtic Knot Calligraphy Border]
Wow! lovely Rotunda artwork Steve.. I like the details on that “r” (on “started”) and “k” (on “know”). [Exploration]
That is jaw-droppingly beautiful. [Letters Interacting]
Ferdinandus, d.s., Calligrapher
Realmente, la combinación de colores y tipografías es magnífica. [Serenity Now]
Another Outsider, Calligrapher
It’s perfect! [Gothic Letter s x42]
I really like the way you design calligraphy. [Design]
I just found out about this magazine. It’s awesome! [GIMP Magazine]
Steve this looks great and thank you for your work and dedication to helping others. [Desktop Publishing Course]
+Steve Czajka of +GIMP Magazine has a beautiful calligraphy piece up from one of my favorite poems “The Raven”. Have a peek!
Great Video, Thanks for the plug for +Open Source Photography, much appreciated, and we’ll continue to promote +GIMP Magazine, where, and as often as we can. [GIMP Magazine]
Beautiful work, so remarkable. [Design Brochures Video Tutorial]
Wow, Steve that was an awesome tutorial / walk through. It’s like I knew most of the basic steps but you went through everything so it’s kind of confidence booster on moving forward with scribus. Nice work, inspiring. [Design Brochures Video Tutorial]
Awesome video, thanks [Design Brochures Video Tutorial]
Thanks very much. just starting with Scribus and this gave me some confidence about what I can do [Design Brochures Video Tutorial]
Diane Foisy Iannuzziello, Calligrapher
I absolutely love what was done with creating this brochure. Your calligraphy and Mark’s looks outstanding here. The brochure has that nice old authenticity appearance, and represents our guild with class.Very very nice!!Thanks to both of you for creating this. [Calligraphic Arts Guild of Toronto Brochure]
Thanks for the superb tutorial [Design Brochures Video Tutorial]
Thanks, great tutorial liked and subscribed 😀 [Design Brochures Video Tutorial]
Excellent magazine. I’m really enjoying your work. 🙂
Oh I would like to try to use someday GIMP just because this tutorial.. as you can see I become into the deep way about your calligraphy artwork.. so because. I love to know how is the creative process of certain work that I like.. thank you for share this here. [September Video Tutorial]
Thanks for your explanation! never knew about this before. I’m looking forward for your next videos and tutorials ! This is really cool ! [September Video Tutorial]
Nice!!! [Digital Arts Course]
Wished I had seen this before. Nice work, love it! [Gothic December 2011 Video]
An excellent tutorial explaining in particular how to simulate a color adjustment layer. [Amber X3 Video Tutorial]
Exceptionally good video. The girl is as haunting as the music. You did an excellent job of presenting it too. You have something rare on youtube these days, class.[Amber Video Tutorial]
Inspiring [GIMP Magazine]
Steve i’m from Colombia and i’m really impressed with your work, now you are mi idol haha
I really enjoyed your course. I’ve been long wanting to publish a book (on a tight budget). Stumbled onto Scribus and your course. Thanks much! [Desktop Publishing Course]
This is awesome! Thank you for this magazine!
John van Rooy
I have been a Gimp user for a number of years (maybe 6 or so) and recently have been teaching my DTE (digital Technology) classes (over the past 3 years) how to use the rudiments of this fantastic open sourced product. Now I have discovered the GIMP Magazine, and will likely use this to better mine and my student’s skill levels. Thanks to both yourselves and the GIMP team for adding power to our enjoyments of digital graphics including the ability to enhance our photographic images. All hail to you and cheers. [GIMP Magazine]
U da best [GIMP Magazine]
Awesome magazine …thank you
Impressive work, thank you! [GIMP Magazine]
Thank you for great work! [GIMP Magazine]
great job! [GIMP Magazine]
So cool! [GIMP Magazine]
GREAT WORK!!!!! [GIMP Magazine]
It was a very great job. [GIMP Magazine]
Great job! [GIMP Magazine]
Mark Lurz, Calligrapher
Steve, You’ve been busy. Great stuff. I liked your Oktoberfest: Even, homogenous flow of your Gothic. Mark
Wow…your enthusiasm is contagious!!
love it. excellent work, man. [Dolce India]
Steve – this is very beautiful. [Times Like These]
Very nice, Steve! This jumped out at me on Pinterest, and I followed it back to you! [The Raven]
Joel m fabiana
So Awesome! [Calligraphy]
The Road Runner
Your work is amazing I have searched high and low for someone to help me I’m getting my two baby girls names tattooed on my arms and I have fallen in love with this style calligraphy and calligraffiti style.
Mary Moore, Udemy
Just wanted to tell you Steve how absolutely awesome your course was! I have been using Scribus for a couple of years but knew that I still was not using many of the tools available. I use Scribus for book formatting and can’t wait to start on my third book project. The videos were very helpful, so nice to actually see you you use tools and learn exactly what can be done. I highly recommend this to everyone who uses Scribus. [Desktop Publishing Course]
[The course] Showed up today and its awesome. Anyway, my wife and i are doing this together. thank you much. [Digital Arts Course]
Mandy Reilly, Udemy
This was a really interesting course by Steve Czajka, which I enjoyed very much. The accompanying notes and resources are excellent and while I understood most of the lessons, there are a few lectures I will have to return to a few times in order to get the hang of them, but that is the beauty of having access online. Highly recommended and I look forward to any further courses by Steve in the future. [Desktop Publishing Course]
By the way great course. Thank you for your time and help. [Gothic Calligraphy Course]
I thought I’d let you know that I’m a real fan, and I think this course is the perfect next step in developing my digital arts, graphic design skills. I purchased your course on Scribus a couple of years ago and found it really helpful. The lessons were sequenced well and the demos clearly explained. I’m currently working my way through your course on Gimp and Inkscape and will be ready soon for some more guidance in design. Thank you. I’ll definitely get the new course. I work for a small organization that develops technical assistance products for educators. We’re real do-it-yourselfers, and it’s been fun and empowering to take on the formatting and design of our publications. Thanks for helping me along this path. I’ll look forward to the new course. [Digital Arts + Design Master Class Course]
Your Scribus course was definitely helpful and I will consider getting your new one [Digital Arts + Design Master Class Course], as well.
Garden Of Welcome
I had a look through and it looks quite good. [Gothic Calligraphy Course]
Excellent website. The comment is well deserved, you have an amazing talent.
Leodor Selenier, Graphic Designer, Illustrator, curator at Bon Expose with over 2.8M followers on Google+
DESIGNER TYPE is a absolutely mind-blowing project. Your project is absolutely fascinating, very innovative and extremely helpful to not only young designers but everyone of them. It will be our pleasure to help you spread around the globe about your project, and hopefully you gain the success that you so much deserve.
Just wanted to let you know I’m really enjoying your course for Scribus. I can see you’ve put a lot of thought and effort in creating this. It’s really great value for money and just what I needed!