Calligraphy is making a huge comeback recently, especially thanks to a lot of texture arts. Though it was the main form of writing for many years, it has fallen out of favor for newer styles of handwriting that are easier to learn for children, easier to read, and that can be done with any pen, not just a calligraphy pen. Now, however, a growing number of people are interested in learning more about calligraphy and how they can learn calligraphy to create amazing works of art.
What is calligraphy? Calligraphy is a style of writing done with a special pen so that the strokes of the pen create a thin or a thick line. There are many different styles of calligraphy, from basic writing to far more elaborate types. When most people think of calligraphy, they think of huge letters with lots of flowing lines that take a while to write. Many times, calligraphy like this is used for the first letter at the start of a chapter in books.
While that is one style of calligraphy, it’s not the only one and there are many you can learn if you decide to give calligraphy a try. It’s a good idea to look through a few of the different styles you can learn through tutorials online to get a better idea of which one you might be interested in learning first. From there, you’ll need to make sure you’re prepared and have the right materials so you can start to learn how to do calligraphy.
Choose the Right Materials to Get Started
Calligraphy cannot be done with a regular pen. If you want to learn how to do calligraphy, beyond learning what is calligraphy, you’ll want to make sure you have the right supplies so you can learn it properly and have the letters appear how you want them. You’ll want to have a calligraphy pen, smooth paper, paper with lines or a way to create lines on your paper, and ink.
- Calligraphy Pen – Calligraphy handwriting can only be done with a calligraphy pen. The right type of pen is crucial to making the thin and thick lines as you create the letters. There are a few different types of calligraphy pens available today, ranging from the old feather pens to ones that look like fountain pens. Pay attention to the nib, or the end of the pen, to make sure it’s the right size for a beginner to use and that it’s going to create the lines needed for calligraphy.
- Smooth Paper – When you use paper that isn’t very smooth, the lines you make can blur. This is called feathering, and you’ll want to avoid it as much as possible. For smooth, clean lines, you need smooth paper. You can purchase paper specifically created for calligraphy or use something a little less expensive when you are first learning.
- Beginner Paper – Beginner paper is available with lines on it to help you learn how to form the letters. However, if you want to save money or you can’t find the beginner paper near you, there are other options as well. As long as you have a smooth paper, you can draw the lines on it yourself. Make sure you use a ruler so the lines are the same distance apart across and down the page.
- Ink – Because of the resurging interest in calligraphy, many different types of ink are available. You will not want to use fountain pen ink because that type of ink is too thick and can clog the nib of your calligraphy pen. Instead, check for ink that is labeled for use with calligraphy pens. You can choose any color you want when you first start learning.
Practice the Basics Before Learning Letters
From the beginning, calligraphy is much different than what you’re used to. You can’t just pull the lid off the pen and start writing. Instead, you’ll need to learn how to dip the pen in the ink just right so you get enough ink to start writing but you don’t get too much that it blobs on your paper.
You’ll also want to practice drawing the basic lines and curves used in calligraphy. There’s only a few different lines and curves used, and once you know these, you’ll be able to combine them to create any letter you want. This is the very start of learning calligraphy, but being able to do the lines and curves properly is essential.
Make sure you practice holding the pen properly when you’re practicing lines and curves. You need to hold the pen at about a 45-degree angle to the paper and make sure the nib is flat on the paper to get the thick and thin lines that make up the letters. This is often the most difficult part for beginners to learn, but once you learn how to hold the pen, you can start practicing your letters.
It’s a good idea for you to use a calligraphy tutorial to start learning how to use your new calligraphy pen. This way, you can see how the lines and curves are formed, as well as the letters, and watch how you’re supposed to hold the pen. The more you can see being done, the easier it is for you to copy what you’re learning and perfect what you’re trying. Many tutorials are available online today so you can view them at your own convenience and learn how to do calligraphy.
Start Practicing the Letters
Calligraphy handwriting is mainly made from the lines and curves you’ll first learn when you’re learning how to dip your pen in the ink and how to hold the pen so it writes properly. From there, however, you’ll want to start learning how to form the basic letters. The lowercase letters are often less complex, so most people begin learning lowercase letters.
If you use a calligraphy tutorial, you likely won’t learn the letters in order. Most of the time, tutorials will start with the easiest letters and move to more complex ones as you master the easier ones. This enables you to continue practicing what you’ve learned and go on to learn more complicated letters that are harder to form when you’re initially beginning.
Learn How to Care for Your Calligraphy Pen
You’re not going to perfect your calligraphy in an afternoon and you aren’t going to want to try it once and throw away all of your supplies. This means if you’re ready to learn calligraphy, you’re going to want to make sure you know how to care for your supplies. The most important thing to remember is to clean your pen every time you’re done using it.
To clean your pen, all you need to do is clean the nib with a little bit of warm water. You’ll then want to pat the nib dry gently to remove as much moisture as possible without damaging the nib. This should be done when you’re switching colors as well as when you’re done writing for the night.
If you have any ink on your calligraphy pen, you may want to gently wipe the ink off before it dries with a damp towel. Once it has dried, you may not be able to get it completely off your pen.
Practice Often to Perfect Your Writing
Going through a calligraphy tutorial and learning how to make the lines and curves as well as how to actually create the letters is only the first step. You likely won’t be able to do it well the first time you try. The key to gorgeous calligraphy writing is to keep practicing. You’ll want to practice the lines and curves as well as the letters. You can also practice writing short phrases or sentences to practice writing double letters or tow practice writing more naturally. The more you practice, the better you’re going to get. If you practice a little bit each day, you’ll have mastered your first type of calligraphy before long.
Learn Different Styles Once You’ve Mastered the First One
Learning one style can be a lot of fun, but you may want to branch out and try other styles as well. When you know a few different styles, you can have more fun with lettering different designs for things you may want to create.
Check out a few of the different calligraphy handwriting tutorials to learn more about the different styles that are popular today and that you might want to learn. There are many different tutorials, so you should be able to learn a few different styles easily and increase your knowledge of calligraphy and of how to create beautiful letters with a simple, old-fashioned pen.
If you want to improve your handwriting or learn how to do hand lettering, start with learning calligraphy. Done with a special pen, this is a style of handwriting that is unique and fun to use. Check out tutorials to help you learn calligraphy quickly and easily. Once you give it a try, you may find you really enjoy writing calligraphy when you’re creating something fun.
Looking for something to help your calligraphy skills?
Sketch designs are becoming a popular way to bridge the gap between calligraphy and drawing.