Learning Calligraphic Type: The Art of Calligraphy Writing

Original artwork by Dorsi Diaz
Original artwork by Dorsi Diaz | Source

Learning Calligraphy

I have always had good penmanship but did not learn the art of calligraphy until I was in my late 20's. Always an artist, learning calligraphy was just a natural extension of my art. I was also a budding sign designer, so learning calligraphy helped me learn other types of font styles.

I have used calligraphy to address envelopes, make signs, badges, artwork and sometimes I even use it in my everyday writing. In fact, I think calligraphy has somehow blended into my own handwriting, purely by default.

The first class I took in calligraphy was in college. It was actually a lettering class and calligraphy was one of the forms of type that we needed to learn by hand. Although I did learn some of the more fancy styles which took much more time, I developed my own style which I still use to this day. The artwork above is one of the pieces I did when I was creating lots of framed calligraphy for sale. I used marking pens to do the roses (just a very loose style - something I like to use in some of my artwork) and then I used a pre-made calligraphy pen to do the lettering (when I say pre-made I mean the pens that are already ready to write with) Although I can do calligraphy with a fountain pen and inkwell, I prefer the more modern pens. Much easier and less messy.

I became a very fast calligrapher

In the 90's I started using calligraphy a lot when I started painting Christmas windows. I used the edge of a foam brush just like the tip of a calligraphy pen to write "Happy Holidays", "Merry Christmas" and "Seasons Greetings" on customers windows. I got so proficient with the foam brush that I also learned how to use 3" and 6" foam rollers to also do these same greetings on large customer windows like 24 Hour Fitness and Trader Joe's.

To this day calligraphy remains one of my favorite type styles to use. It is beautiful, elegant and ads a nice flair to any written word.

For those that want to learn the art of calligraphy, there are many inexpensive sets that you can buy with pens and instructions already included. Calligraphy sets can also be bought through Amazon (see Amazon capsule here with some of the sets you can buy) And don't be afraid to try learning this art - all it takes is patience and a desire to learn. And lots of practice! Once you learn it though you will be hooked and find yourself using calligraphy in some, if not many, of your writing tasks.

@Copyright Dorsi Diaz 2011

(Dorsi Diaz is a freelance writer/publisher, artist and photographer. She has written over 150 articles here at HubPages on everything from art to poetry, climate change, conspiracy sites and gardening. Please check out some of my other hubs and I hope you enjoyed this piece on the art of calligraphy! Please subscribe to my RSS feed to be notified when I publish more hubs)

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Comments 9 comments

RTalloni profile image

RTalloni 4 years ago from the short journey

Your work is wonderful and your hub is encouraging.

A calligraphy set would make a neat gift to an older child who is creative. Thanks for sharing about your love of calligraphy!


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 4 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@RT) Thank you RT. Calligraphy is so much fun and I think anyone that has a desire to learn can - at any age. Thanks for reading!


KeithTax profile image

KeithTax 4 years ago from Wisconsin

I wish I had a steady hand to do calligraphy. My oldest daughter is the artist in the family. Your work is beautiful. I wish we could have seen more.


edmob1 profile image

edmob1 4 years ago from United Kingdom

Like Kieth I wish my hand was steady enough to producce such work.


Sally's Trove profile image

Sally's Trove 4 years ago from Southeastern Pennsylvania

Dorsi, I so admire the encouragement you give others in this hub. Calligraphy absolutely is something almost anyone can do, given patience, desire, and practice.

One of the most beautiful modern pieces I've ever seen was created by a Quaker friend of mine to honor her marriage. She started to learn and practice in her late thirties, and to this day, as you say, she finds so many opportunities to use this form.

Although I attempted the discipline, it never sat well enough with me for me to keep it going forward. At the same time, I keep my Osmiroid pen sets in good condition for the day I might want to try again. On the other hand, maybe I need to move on to one of those 3-inch rollers and let it rip!

Up and beautiful.


DonnaCosmato profile image

DonnaCosmato 4 years ago from USA

Awesome window art! I've always wanted to learn calligraphy but never really conquered my procrastination. However, I've bookmarked this page in the hopes that if I read it often enough, it will inspire me to take some action (voted up as well).


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 4 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@Keith) Thank you so much. I'll dig around and see if I can come up with some more of my calligraphy that I can scan.

@ed) Have you tried using some of the pre-made calligraphy pens? They are easier to use.

@Sally) A 1" foam brush with a tip is great for calligraphy too. Thanks for stopping by my friend!

@Donna) Thank you Donna and I hope you try it!


Hello, hello, profile image

Hello, hello, 4 years ago from London, UK

You brought back some memories. That used to be my favourite subject in school and I always got best mark. I was good at it.


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 4 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area Author

@hello,hello) Nice to see you to a "fellow" calligrapher!

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