C17: Day 171 – O, Q

by Suw on June 20, 2017

Nice and satisfying today.


C17: Day 170 – U, Y, X

by Suw on June 19, 2017

Today’s practice. Still finding it hard to get that big swishy bit on the left to come out properly.


C17: Day 169 – F, T

by Suw on June 18, 2017

The little extra thickness on the top of the F and T is formed by going over the hairline again with a slightly thicker stroke, which is far, far easier said than done. I think, also, that the loop ought to have been bigger.


C17: Day 168 – z, p, basic stroke, P

by Suw on June 17, 2017

I do have a bit of a confession to make: the instructions tell you to turn the paper upside down to draw the left-hand part of the lower loop for the z, and I’ve been far too lazy to. Instead, I’ve been trying to join it up at the bottom left corner of the lo0ps, with varying degrees of success. The idea of constantly turning the paper… gah. No. But, I have now graduated to upper case letters. Yay!

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Those damn ascender and descender loops are bastards. That is all.


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C17: Day 165 – i, u, w j, l, t, f, k

by Suw on June 14, 2017

The way that the Vitolo book groups letters together makes a lot of sense – there’s a huge similarity between an i, u and w, for example. Anyway, here’s my practice.

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More practice, but this time with proper (ish) technique!

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I do love plunging in to a project and just cracking on with it, but it’s sometimes my undoing. It turns out, I’ve been doing some of my letters wrong.

I was really struggling with forming half-decent letter shapes, especially the ‘e’ and some of the upstrokes, so I went back to the handbook (pdf) that I had previously only glanced at. In said handbook, I found this:

A point of confusion for many novices is the direction of the individual pen strokes. As I stated in the first chapter, Engrosser’s script is not handwriting. We are literally ‘drawing’ the letters. Therefore, a different approach is needed to accomplish this. The technique involves creating letters using a series of strokes.


I’ve been trying to do everything as if it’s handwriting, and it’s not. So, back to basics then. Yesterday, which I did not have time to blog, I tried to do what is for me the hardest of the basic forms, the downstroke with the top loop, which should be done as per this diagram:

As you can see, the tall loopy figure is a wedge-shaped downstroke with a fine up-and-round-and-downstroke. It’s that latter bit that I seriously struggled with, and particularly joining it up at the top of the wedge and getting a fluid top part of the loop. (Also I tried that red ink again.. still a no go, though, it just floods the paper then runs out. )

So today, I had a proper go at this set of basic shapes. Still struggling with that P-shape, but am improving.

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C17: Day 160 – Yet more practice

by Suw on June 9, 2017

More practice!


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C17: Day 159 – More practice

by Suw on June 8, 2017

More exercises!

And my worksheet:

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C17: Day 158 – More calligraphy exercises

June 7, 2017

Practice makes perfect, or at least, slightly less wobbly. Update: I was in a rush last night, but yesterday I started on the lessons I found on zanerian.com, the first being: I also had difficulty again with the Indian Red ink, which might be because I can’t actually dip the whole nib in because the […]

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C17: Day 157 – A change of pace

June 6, 2017

Sometimes, my subconscious does things all by itself and I just have to follow where it leads. Today is one such day, so instead of calligraphy we have what might be loosely termed “a comic”. I’ll note here that I am not an artist, cannot draw comics, and I certainly can’t draw people*, but I do […]

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C17: Day 156 – Yesterday, part 2

June 5, 2017

So beer and calligraphy didn’t appear to mix too well last night. Who knew? So I’m having another go at yesterday’s exercise and I think I’ve done a better job.

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C17: Day 155 – Ink flow

June 4, 2017

I nearly forgot to do my practice today, and it’s possible that calligraphy and beer don’t mix too well. I seemed to have either too much ink in the nib, or not enough. The worksheet is on the left, my paltry efforts on the right.  

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C17: Day 154 – Getting the nib in the holder correctly

June 3, 2017

I was searching for more worksheets online this morning when I stumbled on a whole book about penmanship, including a section on how to use an oblique holder. It seems that I had my holder the wrong way round, so today I have repeated the same exercises as days 153 and 152, with the nib now at the […]

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