"Old Skill, New Style"

February 25, 2016

Learning a new craft is often confusing at first. However, a benefit of learning calligraphy is that it’s based on something you've practiced since you were a kid: the alphabet! Calligraphy (beautiful or decorative penmanship) is a great creative outlet -- one that you can pick up pretty easily but practice for a lifetime. 

You may want to learn calligraphy so that you can address your own wedding invitations or illustrate your vows. You may have been told that you have great handwriting and wish to experiment with new materials. Or you might think you have horrible handwriting, and you hope that slowing down with a new pen will help you write more clearly. (You don’t have horrible handwriting. All handwriting is awesome.)

There’s nothing like a handwritten note. Putting pen to paper helps us express ourselves, it shows that we care, and it results in a tangible keepsake. There are so many ways to write beautifully, so I hope you’ll join me as we discuss them over the course of this column!

Before I go, here’s your first lesson: In most forms of modern calligraphy, the letters are enhanced with a thicker downstroke and a thinner upstroke. Meaning, you’ll apply more pressure and pigment as your pen moves downward, and you’ll lighten up this pressure as you gently push your pen upwards. Think fettuccine on the way down, and angel hair on the way up. You can use a pointed dip pen, brush marker, or a paintbrush to get this line variation. Or, you can “fake it” with a regular pen, by thickening your downward marks. Pictured above are some basic practice strokes to get you started.


Leave a comment

Subscribe