Intro to Modern Calligraphy | Simone Sloan | Skillshare

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

8 Lessons (39m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Supplies!

    • 3. Drills!

    • 4. Group 1 and 2 Letters

    • 5. Group 3 Letters

    • 6. Group 4 and 5 Letters

    • 7. Group 6 Letters

    • 8. Last thoughts and Project

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About This Class

Welcome to my Skillshare class on Intro to Modern Calligraphy with a dip Pen! In this course I will go over basic materials and where you can purchase them, how to care and store your tools, and how to use them. I will also include drill practice and will go over the alphabet. You do not need to have any prior experience with calligraphy, all levels are welcome! if you don't have the calligraphy pen yet, you can also start the practice with a pencil until you're able to purchase one!

Meet Your Teacher

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Simone Sloan

Calligrapher, Letterer, Mix Media Artist


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1. Introduction: have you ever wanted to learn calligraphy? But I always thought that you had horrible handwriting were intimidated by the unique looking tools, Like the oblique pen. I didn't think you were crafty, artsy or talented enough. Well, I'm here to tell you that even if you said yes to all of the above, you can still learn quicker feet and do pretty well on it, too. Hi. I'm Simoni, the calligrapher behind the vintage in it. And this is my skill shirt class on modern calligraphy with the depend and this course, I will show you the basic tools you'll need to get started. Basic letter form thin and thick stroke and also provide all the practice sheet you need. What else would you need? Patience and practice. So if you're ready to learn in the skill or interested in maybe turning a hobby into a side hustle just interested in calligraphy in general, click on the next video to get started 2. Supplies!: Hi, everyone. Welcome to my skill share class on modern calligraphy. With the depend in this video, I'm going to show you the supplies that you can buy to start your practice and some of them you gonna use for a long time and some of them you're going to be the upgrade or just changed to something that from a different brand, it will all depend on your preference. So I'll start with the paper. This is what you see Here is just the paper regular laser jet paper that you can buy from any supply. So that has, like, office supplies like Staples, for example. That's what The main store that carry these, uh, where I live and you just print it off. Things grade that I found online is from printable paper. That net is not for you to resell it, obviously so. But you can practice on it. So you print on a regular laser, Dina Inc. You need to get a good quality paper just because the neighbor will be much nicer to you and I'll show you what I mean later. But it's a very smooth paper, and, um, you be thankful that you got this one instead of like, inexpensive one. So this is what I practice on. I also have this path of woody up paper that you can buy online. You also might be able to find some supply stores are supplies where you live in, but you can buy it on Amazon. So that's one place that I actually by. So I don't have to drive anywhere and just chase this paper round so you can buy and several different forms. This one is a blank wine. That's where I do, for example, my drills that we will be doing later. And, um, some doodles and where do my sketches. You can see one here for a wedding that I did not too long ago. But you don't have to have this pad, but you can start with that, and you might just use the paper. Just the printer paper. Later. It's up to you. So this is one of the things that I use, and I have, like, a pile of them that I use that I just feel bad. I want to throw it away. One thing that you can keep in mind is keep a very first practice. Don't throw it away. Even if you think that looks horrible, keep it because a year from now, if you practice a lot, you're going to see the improvement. You're going to see how far you you came. So keep that. And, uh either if you use this pattern on, just make sure that you keep your practice So pens or pen holders, this is the main one that I use right now, this is an oblique pen that we call as a metal Flender right here. That's where you put your name and I'll show you in a second how you take it off, put it in. But this one I ordered online on etc. From gentlemen them made them mom and shifted to me all the way from Turkey. So I love this one's has a little purple dark, dark purple and I don't know if you can see it or not, but it's purple in black and I love him now. If you are intimidated by the oblique because of the you know so pretty interesting looking pen. You can try or it's start with the ST one. This is a manuscript. You can buy it online, and I'll put everything out there just where you can find it on the course description. But this is a straight one. It has universal insert for anything that you want to use who looks like this one. I was a man later on, but this is Ah, call Universal Insert. This is another straight one that I love. And, um, I don't know how to pronounce the name, so I would just add it to the description of the class. So this one is a little wider and a but handsome might be a little easier to write for a longer period of time. But I actually love this one. A lot of people like wider ones, cause it's easier on the hand and there are right, But I like the skinny ones. I don't know why this is another one that I got. I also got I don't etc. For Ashley Bush, she has amazing pez, their old hand painted and they're amazing. So I feel bad actually using this one because they're so pretty with the little gold foils in it. So if you want to start with something very, very simple and inexpensive because you don't know if you're gonna like do oblique ones. You can start with a speedball. That's the 1st 1 that I ever used that I'll use it anymore just because the flinch, which is a plastic one. It's in a very weird location and it doesn't look my hand writing doesn't look as as good with it, or my calligraphy doesn't look as good with it, I should say, And but you can start with this one. But if you decide to move on and, um, right, professionally or just right for a long period of time, I suggest that you go for something a little tiny bit better, and you don't have to spend hundreds of dollars. You can buy something like like this, for example, not this one, but something like this for, like, $15 online, which is a pretty good price for an oblique pen that it's a decent quality. Now we're gonna go for the Nibs. These ones are the two. My two favorite ones. They're dirty because they're old, but they look like this very shiny silver number one, the brand new, which is this one. This one is called G bib. This one zebra, zebra Gina. That's my favorite and very sturdy. And Matt you flexible, which is good for beginners because you kind of, you know, need to get your footing around. Shouldn't say footing because you're using your hands. But it's not too flexible, so you can put a lot of strength in it. A lot of power and it's not gonna break or anything and has it let go a good amount of ink when you write this one is a similar one a little bit time, a little bit more flexible. It's well, we call Blue Pumpkin just because it's blue and the top of it, like looks like a pumpkin. Well, use your imagination. To me. It does just because it does. But it's called Boo. Pumpkin has a brand name, obviously a style model, whatever you call it, and I put on a description. But that's what we call. I use a pencil or a mechanical pencil. McKenna pencil for you to do your drills and trace It treats it a lot when I do for weddings and for anything professional. I just don't ride with ANC. Just don't do it. Some people do, and they're very tempted. But I trace most of the things that I write professionally just because I wanted to make sure that their center and they're on the style that I want. So I use a pencil just regular one. Anything that you like with razor um, aches. My favorite black one is Sumi Ink. The Chinese ink has a very nice finish. Will be kind of glossy. You can find that online. You can find it on Amazon. Actually, I will leave links or where you can find on the course description. But the the container it looks like this. That's the one that I use. This one is a big one because I use so much. So I buy a big one. And what I do is I just buy these little containers right here, and I just put a little bit in there, and that's where I did my been. So another one is a Walnut Inc is very popular right now. Everybody loves in and gives like a vintage screw. Lee kind of feel so brownish, but it's not very. It's very kind of a pagan, not super dark. It's I will write a little bit with that just so you can see what it looks like, what you come by this online or on art store. But you might find better price. I would say, if you buy it online from actual our store instead of like Amazon, for example. But you never know. Amazon always comes with new stuff every day, so whatever is better for you. So I also have napkins. I just have regular napkins because I just like to take the buildup residue from the from my nib every once in a while just because if there's build up at the very tip of in and there's ink is going to show on a letter, cause will drag Inc around. Same thing. If use fabric map can don't use that some people do. I think it's very risky. Started use paper because it's minimizes the risk of fuzz at the tip of your neighbors That helped carries Inc around. You don't want that you want us clean as possible when you buy your ANC. Take this off the Flynn right now with very shining pretty, and it comes with also the manufacturer oils in it, so it's not going to hold a lot of ink. So what I do? I just spray a little bit off alcohol or Windex or any cleaning product, actually, or to face. If you don't like to use cleaning products that much around the house, I use alcohol. I put in a little bottle, so I just spray like this and then I'll just clean it with that napkin right here. And that should take most of the oils out at first. It doesn't look like that Ink is getting its been sticking to it, But trust me a. Well, I also have. Well, it's empty right now, but I put a little water is very important that you clean your nib throughout your work every once in a while, just so he doesn't have the build up. There's nothing in here again just because I don't need to put it right now. But I just wanted to show you the main things that I use. And now we can move on to your next video, which we're going to do the drills 3. Drills!: welcome back, and now we're going to start with their drills. You're not starting with the oblique pen or the any depend just yet. We're just gonna use a regular pen pencil. You can do with the pen to feel like I just do it with the pencil. This is just warm up your hand. It's a very important day. Warm up your hand. You're going to notice that your best practice or you the best results you're going to get a few minutes after you have started because your hand is not warmed up, so you need to warm it up. You don't need to do any exercise, but you can just warm it up by writing. If you just don't want to warm up and you just want to start writing, that's fine. Just make sure that that's not your final work, that you're not going to give whatever you writing at first to someone. So just write whatever you want to write, even if you just want to do with the ink, it's fine I do with the pen, and there's a couple of things things that I like Teoh right when I warm up and they're not anything specifically towards or anything. I just do random shapes. So I start with levels little mountains and I do it opposite way to which they look the same. Oh, I do zigzagging. I also practiced pressure on and off with a pencil so you can start with a lot of pressure and then you lift up when you get to the end of the line. So just regular lines, they're just going down regular straight lines. But you put a lot of pressure at the top and just lift off at the end. Obviously, don't put too much pressure where you're gonna break anything, but just a little pressure. So you feel like the lines air stronger, and then you lift off and you can do the same thing with when you do the little mountains. The pressure is always when you go down and lift the pressure when you go up. Then when you go down, a lot of pressure and little pressure when you go up a lot of pressure when you go down. If you're in a hurry and you think that this is boring, you can just write anything that you want. I usually just go like this and I do fast and I'm not worried about the shape of anything. I'm just doing the motions off ovals or l's or ease. But I do counterclockwise, and then I do clockwise. And if you want to practice the pressure, you can hard pressure down, low pressure up, hard pressure down low pressure up to make sure that you do this for a few minutes. Sometimes I don't even look at the paper. I'm looking at something else for reading something else. We're watching TV, and I'm just moving my hands really fast for a few minutes. Try not to skip your drills is very important. Day your hand is warmed up. You're going to see after several minutes over my hand. Ready Looks so amazing. But the beginning looks so not so amazing. It's because your hand wasn't warmed up yet. So if you can, please don't skip your drills is very important. You going to thank yourself later? Okay, so do some practice. Warm up your hand on the next video. We'll start with the letters 4. Group 1 and 2 Letters: welcome back. So now we're going to start with our letters, divided all the letters in the alphabet and groups so they build up onto each other, so it's a little bit easier. So the first thing that I have to say is if you ever thought that your handwriting is bad, a lot of people say that their handwriting is like chicken scratch. Forget about it. You will. You do in his designing letters here. So it has nothing to do with your handwriting. You just going to go through the motions and designed the letters instead of just writing. Obviously, for some people come a lot more natural. But I know a lot of people have very bad handwriting, and they do beautifully when they do calligraphy. So that's what we're going to start right now. It's a practice when the letter form the drills help, I also will add. I have added already the list of all the drills that also that if we didn't do today, but you can practice using that and all the Tracy the letters of the alphabet. I'm going to include all that so you can practice a home you can trace the letters also not just write it on your own, so you can get a little bit of a feel of what it is to write on the modern style. And we'll start with the letter O we're gonna do O A, C E. And this and this group. It's a group one, and I might speed up the video throughout the process just so you don't watch me do like all the letters. But I will write a few so you can watch, and I'm also going to zoom in every now and then. So you see what the nebel do. So, for example, you know those nice little thick strokes that you get the thick lines that you get when you're writing calligraphy. It's because the nib splits. There is a little split in the middle, so I hope you can see I'm getting close the camera so I don't want to get to blurry. So it splits. And when you put pressure going down, this will open and release more ink. That's what it makes it thicker. So just keep that in mind. By the way, you're gonna get very dirty throughout the process, like I do the worry this incomes out with just so the water. So it's not anything permanent to avoid the spilling off my container. I put it in something that it's going to avoid legis topping over. You can use like a washing tape. Kind of put it in the middle. I've seen people do that that works well. So you start with the letter O and it's very simple. I'm going to summon the camera so you can see a little bit better, and you're going to start at the top and you're gonna go counterclockwise and pressure down . You're gonna put a little bit extra pressure and lighter when you go up. You see that? The pressure one released more ink and you have more of a thicker stroke on the left side. So every time you go down, you put pressure going down light pressure going up, pressure going down, or more pressure going down like going up and just write that a few times. Keep within the lines just so you have consistency and they all look the same. The same motion, a lot of pressure going down, fly going up, and then you just finished by the side that won didn't go all the way next to it, but letter. Oh, and then you just finish with now I always add a bounce to my letters. That's what makes it look like modern calligraphy. My request come from, you know, they want modern calligraphy. So that's what I do most of the time. So hard. Pressure down and pressure going up pressure like pressure. Sometimes your nip is going to snag on a paper. It could be that you have some build up at the tip. You just have to clean it. Sometimes the paper is not very good. You just have to switch the paper. Sometimes your name comes defective or they just too old and they get bent and you just have to get a new nib so we could be several different things. You just have gonna have to test it out. So half of a no, I guess so. You start with the at the top heart pressure down, and then you get soft when you're at the bottom and you go up just a little bit to form Bessie. I usually added bows and I just go like this, so I'm just adding a little extra something, something to my letters. Just so we make modern. So just so you know, you're going to end up developing your own style, which is great. You don't want to copy anyone, but the basics you get from someone so you That's why you learning and the lesson. But as you practice, you're going to add your own style. So So you practice your C. We'll start with the easy letter so you can learned of, you know, but with the easier ones and not what hard wasn't get discouraged. So that's so That's That's why I start with the super easy ones. There's a couple of ways to do they eat. This is how I do it. I do all in one. So I start with soft pressure or low pressure, and then I'd loop at the top and hard pressure going down soft, hard, soft, hard. I'm gonna do in a little bigger so you can really see. There you go. Now, one thing I'd like to mention is the way that you hold your pen also makes a huge difference. You don't hold it like this. I want to make sure that you see this correctly? Yeah. So you don't hold it like this, cause the name will snag on the paper. You hold it, if you can. About 45 degrees. You can rest your fingers on our where your thumb on the funds, If you would like some people. Like like this. I hold it like this because it gives him more of a grip and more control of what I do, what I'm doing. So I recommend that you try that as well. Some people hold it like this. I don't know how they do it. Everyone holds a different. This is how I like to hold it. Make sure the name is facing the paper. Maybe a little bit to the right. But it has to be mostly on the paper. Pressure always goes down. A lot of pressure down. Light pressure up. If you put a lot of pressure going up, your enables snag and it will splatter ink everywhere. And you probably do it by accident. That's fine. Everyone does it. I do it once in a while, so don't be afraid of that as well. It's part of the process. You learn you get used to it. And then he just comes a second nature. We're gonna go to our next group now, too. It's just two letters. You just start in the middle, go up light pressure, go heart pressure down and lift a little pressure. Our pressure so downs a lot of pressure up, so it looks like an e, but just a skinnier now for the t You just going across those else. So you're gonna go se motion? Cross it like heart pressure across it. 5. Group 3 Letters: welcome to third video, or I should say Group three video where I have the sheet already traced for you just to make it a little easier and less overwhelming. The letters were getting a little bit more intricate, so I traced it for you, and they're going to be available also in the course description. You don't have to guess where how you start where you finished, um, and what direction you're going. So they're all going to have more description in there. This is just the basic tracing just so you can see the movement of my hand and all depend works. And they're all gonna go the same for all the letters. Let's go ahead and get started with the letter F. I already did one here just so I could test my ink A little pressure, Heart pressure cross that's already making made a difference. You see the line or much? Um, center. So that means that there's no build up of ink on my neb. So now move on to the letter P. You start here on the left low pressure than hard pressure coming down. You loop across, you don't have to continue. Can I always stop here right at this point and you pick up the top like this. So I went ahead and switch the name just to see what kind of results we get. That's the bull pumpkin that I mentioned it earlier. So we're just going to see what results we get from this one. So get some ink in there and we're gonna go from the letter Q That's right below it. And it's also on the sheet there. All are gonna be on the sheet on the course description. So same thing so doing, Oh, pressure on the side on all after when you go down and lift up depend when you go up again and then straight line down and you cross it towards the left. Go down to the letter B and you do a loop up. It's a lot of ink. Uh, on down you stop down here, it looks like a L. And instead of going up there way you do 1/2 a Oh, look down. I will go to letter d do like an A that looks like a name. And instead of going, just do the little mark at the bottom you just go do a L next to a so you could deconstruct . I would say your letters will be on a instead of doing that. You just do a Now that's your d go. This is Group three. We're moving on to group four on the next video. 6. Group 4 and 5 Letters: everyone. We are back on group four. So we're getting there. Not much left. So I traced the letters here so you can see a little bit. So probably a little fainted just because, uh, I did with a vessel. So let's start with the letter. I very easy. It's just one movement, and that's good to have one easy letter every now and then with your heart, you know, intricate letters. Just so you take a little break and just little pressure going up and then harder pressure going down and then light again. Forget to dot your i's And I always had the bounce, too. So it makes it more modern looking. Go down harder pressure and make the pressure a little, You know, start to lift, lift up from the paper right here and then very like cross it. That's your J. Judy would be a J with a oh, next to it. So I told you in the beginning of the the as I mentioned in the beginning of the video, all the letters will kind of building to each other. So to make a little easier so down, more, more bank down, up, and then you add the old next to it, but you don't have to do in this order. You can start with the O first close it and then next to a just like in a But you go down and loop, cross it. No letter h. It's almost like the B that we've done before, but you don't close the bottom. You just do like an end. So loop up just like an l go down and then you do like an end The bounce That's your letter Age bounce. Now we have the letter and start here, Go down Hard pressure lift lighter, down harder, More ink letter and similar to the drills that we did the end will be the same is just one instead of two mountains I would say my sound elementary to give examples like that, but that's just a nisi way to remember. A lot of people are not used to ready and person, so this is completely new to them. We are almost that we have in just a couple more letters. Switch this start with letter. Why similar to the J and the G so down like a new gonna do like you almost and the U is coming up. Tony's a letter and down with the loop cross it. Letter Z is very similar as well. Letter Z. I tell my students that it's like the number three with a loop at the bottom. So see, but number three and then you look at the bottom. That's the letters that is Group five and we didn't Group four and five on the next video, we'll do Group six. That will be your last one. 7. Group 6 Letters : Welcome back. We're on the last group of letters were almost dunce homestretch. So start with the letter R. That's right here. It's already trees. These ones are not the hardest letters that you have done except for one and all. And you know when we get there. So let her are you start down here, go for like, Anel. But you don't go all the way to the bottom. You cross in the middle, you stop right here and come down up half of a now cross in the middle. Stop, Go down and up Sometimes I don't trace it just because I want to do it More times in the sheet of paper and I were moving to letter s go up, do a loop Small l go down, loop the opposite way and up And I will have the arrows on the practice She for you to know what direction you're going so you don't get lost. Now we'll go to a letter V. It's like a new but with the loop at the end. So down up, Do a little loop here. That's your letter V. You can see it. Okay. Yes. Oh, down! Pressure by pressure. Now we get to easy letter. Letter you down. What? The heart pressure soft or like pressure on down again. Now what are X is going to be a little I don't want to Tricky, but I chose to do the simple version of the X. So you're going to do a curved down and a curved up and you just cross it. That's what I do. And most of my professional at least work. Go down, up Cross it. So it's like 1/2 of a mountain and that cross it the other way W is next is one of my favorite letters. Just because I do different directions with So you go up here you go down to the left like a you stop in the middle and then you change directions and doing you and the other way loop. Some people like to do just all in one direction. No slant, like from left to right, right Draft left. They do it that way. I like to do both directions and same letter. So one going to the left and then one to the right. I just changed the length or the size of each side of the letter just to give more dimension so boring. So I do a smaller one, the side and then a big one just to add a little more Claire, I would say so. Whatever style you decide to go, it's totally fine. Now we're gonna go to the last letter. It's one that it's a little tricky. These fees, even for me, which will be a letter k. Why? Because there's two ways you can do this. 1st 1 I'm gonna show you is just like the letter age. So you do that l go all the way to the bottom and you can do a tiny K like you doing block or print letters. War You can do the l in the tiny little are some people actually do this actually do the top one more often than I do the bottom. But it's a personal preference. I'm going to do a little bigger so you can see So the 1st 1 you do a little okay, and the 2nd 1 do little are. And so you do a little K on this one or you doing art and they're both still in our kids. They're both lower case case. And so you just choose whatever you like the best in whatever you think. It looks the best for you on your style. 8. Last thoughts and Project: well, that wasn't too hard, was it? With some good practice, you be able to develop and refine your own style. And for your project, you'll be writing and pin Graham. You know, one of those phrases that have all the letters of the alphabet. The brown fox jumps over the lazy dog. There are a few of them online for you to choose from, so choose your favorite right with the calligraphy pen and post your work on the project section. Thank you for watching.