What is Calligraphy?
Calligraphy is the “art of beautiful handwriting”. The difference between calligraphy and other types of art, is that there are “rules” to how lettering is done correctly. There are many styles and a good calligrapher has an ability to write in a few of those styles. The styles are called “hands”, although the public has come to call those calligraphy styles “fonts”, as they are called when you are choosing a style of writing on a computer.
Whatever style you prefer, whether it’s italic, copperplate, foundational, celtic (uncial), or other calligraphy style, the thing that determines if a calligrapher knows what they are doing is consistency in the letter forms. And that’s one of the ways that you can tell if your calligrapher has done a good job.
Is Calligraphy Considered Art?
Calligraphy is considered one of the “highest” art forms in China. Chinese characters look very artistic to begin with, but the best calligrapher can write with abandon and lack of restraint. You can see how letters are drawings; and they need to be done with both discipline and freedom at the same time to really sing! A good calligrapher writing in any style of calligraphy should be able to have this same freedom and flow in their writing.
Consistency is one of the ways to determine. Letters should be the same height (except when you have an “ascender” or “descender”. That’s the part of the letter as in a “b, d, f, g, h, j, k.. etc.” Those parts can be used for “flourishing” or making the letters flow and have movement.
Width should also be consistent. Except for i, j, l, and single stroke letters, the only letters that will be wider are m and w. So you could write an “a”, and all the other letters should fit in those dimensions. Serifs, are the entry and exit marks into and from the letters. They should also be consistent, and “organic” looking- not like sharp sticks. One of the other important aspect is spacing. Letters need to be far enough apart, but not too far.
The way you form a style of calligraphy is to have consistency within that particular style of writing. In italic, the letters are based on an oval shape that is slanted consistently to the right. But foundational is based on a circular shape that stands straight up and down. Once you know the rules, you can break them, by making some letters stand out.
The funny thing is, after learning calligraphy I cannot look at any lettering, either in artwork, in the movies, or advertising without seeing either the faults, or the beauty. I want you to get more understanding of what to look for, so you won’t be paying for inferior work from a person who calls themselves a calligrapher, but does not understand how to form lettering and different styles of calligraphy properly! You can trust Beautiful Calligraphy services to make your text memorable and beautiful.