Home Crochet baby clothesLearn Calligraphy: Getting Started and DIY Tutorial for Beginners

Learn Calligraphy: Getting Started and DIY Tutorial for Beginners

  • calligraphy
    • What is calligraphy "> Materials
    • Tool details
  • Learn calligraphy | First steps
  • Calligraphy | Tips
  • The multiplication table of the auxiliary lines

Calligraphy, "beautiful writing", is an art form that you can learn by yourself. All you need is the right tool, a lot of motivation - and a guide to give you the basics. Our contribution will simply introduce you (and) to the fascinating world of calligraphy!

If you learn and master calligraphy, you have the opportunity to give greetings cards and countless other objects or gifts a very special expressiveness, profundity and personality. Calligraphy fonts are characterized by their beauty. Words written in calligraphic styles literally appeal to the eye of the beholder. With our guide, you immerse yourself in the almost magical cosmos of beautiful writing. We'll tell you what you need and how to get started.

Note: Our guide is for bloody beginners!


What is calligraphy?

The term "calligraphy" (also calligraphy) comes from the Greek and means translated as "the art of beautiful writing". Centuries ago, it served as a means of communication for humans, for example in the form of cave painting, hieroglyphs, Asian characters or Arabic script. Nowadays, this special art is on the rise again, a growing trend - perhaps to counteract the digital-computerized everyday life with something literally tangible.


What equipment is needed to learn calligraphy ">

Fortunately, calligraphy does not require a lot of accessories. But it is all the more important to pay attention to high quality in the required utensils. Only in this way can you achieve really nice, convincing results that motivate you to continue working on your typeface.

These elements are needed for calligraphy:

  • penholder
  • feather
  • ink
  • paper
  • cleaning utensils

Tool details


The penholder forms the basic tool. He picks up the pen that you have chosen to calligraphy. Make sure it fits well in your hand. There are wooden and plastic models.


The pen is the heart of calligraphy. She decides along with her skills on what the particular font looks like. There are many different versions available.

Tip: To try modern calligraphy fonts, you should use a sharp feather. This is very flexible, so you can broaden the line width by pressure. In addition, there are some other types of springs, such as tape tension springs, poster springs, pan springs, Schnurzugfedern, character springs, left-angled springs or rectangular plate springs. However, you should not deal with these until you are familiar with the basics of calligraphy.

Attention: You will also find calligraphy brushes in the specialist trade. These are used for Asian calligraphy. You can already use calligraphy felt-tip pens for your first steps. They have beveled writing surfaces. However, the technique is different compared to the spring. To vary the typeface (ie the typeface) you have to turn the stylus - with pressure you do not align anything here.

For beginners ready mixed drawing ink is optimal.

Tip: Look in the trade for Chinatusche, India Ink or Sumi Ink - these are suitable variants.

In terms of paper, one thing that matters most is smoothness. Use only paper with a smooth surface. Useful are layout and watercolor paper.

Attention: Conventional copy paper is NOT suitable. It has a rough surface on which the drawing ink "bleeds" and runs.

Tip: Layout paper is slightly transparent. This will allow you to put a translucent sheet of guides underneath it - perfect for learning calligraphy.

Before and after each use, you must thoroughly clean your pen. A small bowl of water, a lint-free cloth and soap or rubbing alcohol are important for this.

Learn calligraphy | First steps

First of all, you do not have to have any prior knowledge if you want to learn calligraphy. The tools and materials described above are enough to first get acquainted with the art of beautiful writing . For beginners, it is advisable to additionally use calligraphy exercise sheets. These help to come soon to a harmonious, uniform typeface.

Before you jump on the exercise sheets, however, you should familiarize yourself with your pen or calligraphy pen .

Follow our step-by-step guide:

Step 1: Clean the spring. Immerse the tool in either cleaning alcohol or soapy water and clean it carefully with the lint-free cloth.

2nd step: Wet the feather with ink. The latter should reach about the middle of the small hole in Calligraphy Pen (Keyword Ink Reservoir).

Step 3: Take the pen with the spring in your writing hand. When writing, always hold the pen at a 45-degree angle to the sheet (or later the other surface).

4th step: Now practice strokes: lines, waves, crosses, circles and so on. The best way to do that is to follow the general tips and advice that we give you in the next section.

Step 5: As soon as you are able to vary the thickness of the strokes at will, you can try the first few letters (exercise sheets!).

Note: Take your time, never put yourself under pressure. It may take a while for the lead to be playfully easy and you feel "one" with the pen.

Calligraphy | Tips

General tips about calligraphy

Preliminary remarks: The following tips refer in part exclusively to calligraphy with a pen.

  • Make sure you have enough room to unfold on your work surface, because: If your writing arm does not have enough free space, it can lead to tight postures and thus unsightly results
  • As a right-handed person, you should position all materials (ink et cetera) on the right side of your writing position when writing, as a left-hander on the left side
  • a sloping work surface (a tilted drawing board) is ideal to have a perfect view of the resulting artwork and to be able to write well
  • attach several overlapping leaves as a stabilizing base on your drawing board to have a solid surface
  • grasp the calligraphy pen with forefinger and thumb
  • support him with the middle finger

  • Although the leadership of the pen should be as safe and controlled as possible, it must also feel loose and comfortable
  • In general, do not exert too much pressure, otherwise your hand will quickly tire - which in turn will make the font rigid and correspondingly ugly
  • If you apply more pressure while writing, the line becomes wider; it becomes narrower with less pressure
  • Spreads (strokes that run from bottom to top) should make you thinner (ie work with less pressure), smears (strokes that run from top to bottom) on the other hand thicker (work with more pressure)
  • every stroke should take the same amount of time
  • a consistent writing rhythm is essential for a completely harmonious result
  • For beginners it is recommended to start extremely slow and to increase the speed gradually
  • pay attention to harmonic distances between letters

Example: If two very narrow letters stand side by side, like two small "l", they need a little more space between them than between a wide and narrow or two wide letters. In short, the word structure primarily determines what the distances should be. Later, if you operate with different fonts, these also play a role.

  • When you notice that the ink is clumping, clean your pen in between
  • You may also need to dilute the ink with a water-filled pipette to minimize clumping - use a separate container
  • draw your words in pencil

Even some professionals still do this! Especially at the beginning your head is not able to implement the complicated writing technique and the distance of the spring at the same time. That is why the drawing is helpful. Practical: ink is eraser resistant - with high-quality papers you can see the pre-drawings after the erasure no longer.

Tip: Soft 4B pencils are ideal for first writing exercises.

The multiplication table of the auxiliary lines

With a geodetic triangle and a 2H pencil you can easily draw in the lines for the letter inclination yourself. If you want to save this extra effort, use exercise paper with existing guidelines (available in stores). Here are some basic information about the guides.

Look at the following figure:

1 = baseline (writing line on which you place the body of the letter)

2 = top line (guideline, specifies the height of an ascending letter)

3 = uppercase for capital letters (guideline, specifies the height of a capital letter)

4 = upper length (part of a longer letter lying between x-line and top-line)

5 = descender (part of a more abundant letter that is below the baseline)

6 = x-height (letter height or font part that lies between the baseline and the top line)

7 = x-line (guideline, determines the correct position for the upper limit of the x-height)

8 = inclination line (guideline, gives the correct slope)

By using the auxiliary lines you can achieve a uniform typeface in which ...

  • ... the strokes and smears are parallel to each other.
  • ... the top and bottom lengths are the same length.
  • ... a common baseline forms the framework.

A few tips for the concrete design of the guides:

With a markedly high or markedly low x-height you achieve special effects. But beware: If you choose a higher x-height, you should write the letters narrower and denser. Otherwise, the font may seem too bulky. Conversely, at a lower x-height, it's a good idea to write the letters a bit wider and choose slightly larger distances to keep your readability good and comfortable. Just try different variations and see for yourself what you like best.

In general, it makes sense at the beginning to experiment a lot and to use your own handwriting as a starting point to develop an individual calligraphy. Our advice: Draw up the auxiliary lines shown and described in various variants and write the following sentence in the "masks":

"The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog"

This English sentence seems pointless at first glance, but: It contains all the letters of our alphabet and is therefore the perfect training set . Be creative while writing, get to know and change your own writing. With the time (and especially the exercise) gradually your calligraphy arises. Errors or inconsistencies are perfectly normal in the beginning, but you will see how you get better and safer each time.

Tip: Of course, you can also consciously acquire another, existing calligraphy font. All you need is templates, exercise sheets and video tutorials from the internet.

And a final recommendation: Integrate calligraphy learning into your everyday life. Label invitations or greetings messages on labels as calligraphic. The recipients will be surprised and enthusiastic - and for you every exercise unit is a step in the direction of a successful artistic future!

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