I enjoyed creating my friend’s Christmas place settings so much that I thought I would do more of them but first I really need to polish my calligraphy. ‘Polish’ as in actually learn some proper calligraphy and not just my bastardized calligraphy that solely relies on using an italic-nibbed pen rather than any actual talent. So I got a hold of a Speedball Oblique pen, Winsor & Newton black calligraphy ink and a recommended book. For once I am also determined to start from the bottom and learn my way up instead of taking short cuts.
Things didn’t go great when it took me nearly 3 hours just to line out my guide sheet. Who knew 55 degree lines would be so hard? And getting it right would take a few gos? A week later, I sat down with smooth tracing paper, my book, my pen and ink and started learning the basic lines. It’s really difficult. I began with straight lines then added in up and down strokes. I tried to remember to pause at the top and bottom of the line so that I would have a squared off line. I couldn’t understand why I wasn’t getting a thin line on the up stroke until I realised I wasn’t allowing time for the tines of the nib to come back together after widening for the down stroke. I am so much more impressed by some of the wonderful calligraphers I have seen online – they make it look so easy, but I’ll get there.