Loosening-up On the last page you saw a teacher demonstrating this
first exercise. Now you can see calligraphers at
different stages of their studies learning from it.
This is what happened when
Timothy, who is experienced
but still eager to experiment,
speeded up his capital letters.
Timothy's letters looked
interesting however fast and
roughly he wrote them.
The work on this page was done by first-year students.
This student (above) showed that she had a natural
copperplate movement. She benefitted by discovering
that a normally difficult style of calligraphy would
come easily to her. The example of a classical
copperplate 'S' shows how close she came at her first
attempt. The letters came out well on the whole. They
certainly 'danced across the page'. Understandably, the
movement between letters was less confident than
Timothy's and this sometimes resulted in awkward
joins such as X-Y and R-S. Some students saw the
joins as horizontal and some as rounded movements
What can these exercises do for you? To profit from
them you must learn to look closely into your work.
Pick out the interesting personal elements in your
relaxed scribbles. Then you can incorporate them as a
permanent feature of your letters. This is a good way
of introducing individuality into your calligraphy.