Mastering the Pen: Calligraphy Tips for...

Mastering the Pen: Calligraphy Tips for Beginners

by Rochelle C. Pangilinan
Jobs People Do | JobsPeopleDo.com

In this day and age wherein everyone has ready access to a mobile phone, tablet, or laptop, it is always an advantage to learn a new skill untouched by modern technology; one of these skills is calligraphy. Once you become skilful at this, you can write holiday cards and thank-you notes, making them more personalized as a result. Your recipients will surely take notice of your effort and will be more appreciative.

So how exactly do you learn this art? Read on for practical tips:

Acquire the right tools.

You can’t learn calligraphy with a simple pen and paper. You need the right tools first, starting with what is referred to as the dip pen, specifically consisting of the nib and the nib holder. The nib is the pointed part, typically made of metal, while the nib holder is the one that holds the nib, typically made of wood. Like an artist’s paintbrushes, the nib’s tip size varies. Some are best for fine points, while some are best for broad points. As for the nib holder, you can opt for the ones with rubber to provide you with a better grip.

You can order online for these tools. However, if you want to get the feel of them before buying, your best bet is to head off to an art supplies store near you.

Learn how to be comfortable with it.

Remember when you were learning cursive handwriting the first time? Well, the experience is similar as you would have to be comfortable first before you can find the technique or method that best suits you. Let the calligraphy you’ve seen serve as your inspiration, but do not rack your brains to come up with the perfect carbon copy. Instead, learn how to duplicate it while applying your own style at the same time. Be sure to do calligraphy on a flat desk that is on arm level—not on top of a coffee table where you are hunched back or a too-high desk—so you will be at ease while you try out the strokes.

Practice, practice, practice.

Rome was not built in a day, and you can’t expect to be a master of calligraphy overnight. It takes patience, effort, and a lot of practice. You can practice the strokes on your own or you can download worksheets from the Net—there are loads of free ones you can print right from the site. If you can buy laser jet paper to practice on, that will be better as these are the ones where you can most avoid ink smear.

Join a class.

If you are more at ease learning calligraphy within a classroom setting, find a class to join in. Maybe a local art group hosts once-a-week classes or someone offers free tutorials. You will be surprised at how popular calligraphy is, and these classes may have limited slots that fill up fast. An alternative is to go for video tutorials, and you can find tons from youtube or Instagram. Some of the posters might even be open to questions, and you can certainly take the chance to ask a query.

Show it off.

When you are done practicing, working your way throughout the alphabet, then it is time to show off and try calligraphy on your favourite song lyrics or poetry. Once you accomplish this, take a picture and share it with your social network. You are likely to get hundreds of likes for your effort!

Today, it is almost mandatory to be tech-savvy. However, it’s always good to rely on what you can do with your good ol’ hands to make art, and calligraphy is definitely something worthwhile to try your hand at. Simply keep in mind those tips above, and you will be on your way to be a master calligrapher!





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