If I Were to Start Learning Calligraphy from Scratch, How Should I Begin?Jan 17, 2024
If I were to start learning calligraphy from scratch, how should I begin?
Today, I want to share the steps I would take if I were to embark on my calligraphy journey again: from beginner to a professional calligrapher's roadmap.
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to this, as people have different methods of learning artistic forms. However, looking back, I believe this is the most effective way to avoid wasting time.
Step 1: Familiarize yourself with the essential supplies and tools.
As a beginner, you can't pick up a guitar and play a song or head to the gym and start lifting heavy weights without proper preparation. Similarly, in calligraphy, your first step is to ensure you have the right tools – a suitable calligraphy pen, nib, ink, and paper. To do that, you need to become acquainted with these essential supplies and tools: learn what they are and where to find them.
Furthermore, understanding the supplies is one of the best ways to ease into the world of calligraphy for two reasons: it allows you to see the bigger picture rather than just individual components and also enhances your interest in the subject.
Step 2: Master the Basics for a Strong Start.
Before you immerse yourself in writing calligraphy letters and words, it's essential to grasp the preparatory steps. Skipping these steps can result in damaging your newly purchased nibs, straining your wrist or hand muscles, and hindering your overall improvement.
These fundamental steps include nib preparation, nib insertion into the pen holder, understanding guidelines, creating square tops and bottoms with a single pen stroke, learning warm-up techniques, and practicing calligraphy basic strokes.
I can't emphasize enough the importance of learning and practicing these steps, with a particular focus on the basic strokes. A strong foundation not only accelerates your progress but also paves the way for excellence.
Step 3: Learn Alphabets & Numbers.
In my comprehensive Calligraphy (Copperplate) learning program, the next step after the Basic Kickstart is to learn lowercase letters as well as connecting words. Following that, we progress to uppercase letters, and you can learn how to write calligraphy numbers.
These rules and patterns are the essence of learning Copperplate, which is why I believe it's a good choice to start with among many calligraphy styles.
Step 4: Get Creative with Flourishing.
Flourishing is the artistic touch that takes your calligraphy to the next level. In this step, you'll explore the art of embellishing your writing with elegant flourishes. We'll delve into various flourishing techniques and styles, allowing you to infuse your calligraphy with your unique creative expression. As you master the art of flourishing, your calligraphy will truly come to life.
Step 5: Build Your Business Around Your Passion. (e.g., Calligraphy)
Even though I listed it as the last step, this might not be the final one in terms of timing. Just as it takes time to refine your calligraphy skills, building a business around those skills also requires time. In other words, it's best to initiate this process as early as possible.
There are two things you can begin right away if you haven't already.
The first is social media. Technically speaking, it's 'business media' rather than 'social media.' If you want to build a business in a specific niche, it's a good idea to treat it as such. Follow those who are already on the path you want to take. Study their posts, captions, how they network and communicate, and how they build their community.
Post as frequently as you can. If you're unsure about the quality of your writing, don't worry. In the early stages, consider it more as documenting your progress rather than showcasing your work. This also signals to the algorithm that you're consistent and enthusiastic.
The second step is lead generation. In business, they say everything is downstream of lead generation. It's a good idea to start collecting email leads as you build your audience on your social media accounts. I will show you how to gather leads as a separate topic in the future.
Learning and practicing calligraphy has numerous benefits. I am grateful for the life-changing, transformative experience it has offered. However, looking back, if I were to start from scratch, I would accelerate the process without wasting time hesitating and getting stuck at certain points.
As a complete beginner, I would begin by familiarizing myself with the essential calligraphy supplies and tools to understand the art form. Then, I would delve into learning all the basic housekeeping steps, with a focus on practicing basic strokes as they form the foundation for writing beautiful alphabet letters. (every day)
Following that, I would enjoy learning lowercase and uppercase letters, numbers, and flourishing.
Creating calligraphy envelopes has been highly motivating and enjoyable during my learning process. I would incorporate the practice of making envelopes and sending them to fellow calligraphers all over the world, as it also helps in networking within the community.
Additionally, I would set up my social media accounts as business profiles and begin documenting my calligraphy journey through regular posts. Simultaneously, I would start gathering leads as I work on perfecting lowercase letters.
The key is not just reaching the goal quickly, but also savoring the process and appreciating all the remarkable benefits it brings. I must admit that having someone guide me from the beginning would have made the journey more seamless.
It took a considerable amount of time, but it was undeniably worth every moment.