I’m always on the hunt for a new hobby (obsession).
And since leaving sixth form and subsequently not studying A Level art anymore, I feel like I lack creativity. Although my creativity was forced in school, it was still there and now I miss it. Something which caught my eye a lot recently is modern calligraphy.
I’m told quite often that my handwriting is unreadable – ouch! And so seeing words written so beautifully really interested me. Straight to Amazon I went to buy a book to teach myself. This was Nib + Ink by Chiara Perano which was fun at first but not really a substitute to a real lesson. I had no one to correct me when I was wrong and to reassure me I was doing it properly. Practice makes perfect but I eventually gave up.
But when I showed my sister what I’d done she became interested to learn and so together we searched for a class. After seeing Lily Pebbles had been to Chiara’s studio Lamperlight London and to a class at Quill London I was swayed to go to one of these. Seeing someone else pursuing this hobby only made me want to do it more. I signed up for the waiting list at Quill London and booked a place for the weekend after my birthday as soon as the dates were up.
And so off my sister and I went to learn something new.
This was my first time doing a class as an ‘adult’. By that I mean, not with school. I chose to go and like everyone else was really interested to learn. We sat at a table decorated with flowers and each had a pad of dotted paper, a pen, nib and ink. Each component was explained to us and we soon began having a go at simple pen marks. Once we’d got to grips with the basics it was on to the alphabet – the most exciting part! There’s nothing more satisfying than seeing the alphabet written beautifully and knowing you wrote it.
After writing the alphabet a few times we moved onto words. This was the hardest part as there was so much to think about. Putting everything we had learned so far into practice. And it was important to go slowly doing each letter at a time – resisting the temptation to simply hand write as normal. While practicing, our teacher – Lucy – moved around the room giving us help if we needed it and encouraging us we were actually making progress. Haha.
Modern calligraphy truly is an art form.
We were told Lucy’s handwriting was awful too yet her calligraphy was stunning. They really are separate things altogether. The class was extremely relaxing and we were all concentrating hard. The lesson flew by and we were shocked to see by the time the class ended, two and a half hours had passed. It was amazing to see how everyone in the group had improved in that time and we all encouraged each other.
At the end of the class we were given our materials to keep and a canvas bag to put them in. Both my sister and I thoroughly enjoyed the lesson and were motivated to pursue it further. We were told the best way to practice is little and often – 20 mins two times a week. And this is something I intend to do. Since the class I have picked up the pen again and I realise how much I had improved in the length of the lesson. Like I said, practice does make perfect. And I hope to one day be as good as my teacher.
Have you had a go at modern calligraphy?
Thank you for reading,
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