Denys Taipale is a calligrapher from Great Falls,
Montana, who spends a great deal of her time
lecturing and running workshops throughout the U.S
and Canada. She visited one of my classes and
demonstrated these loosening-up exercises to the
Write your capital letters at speed. Let them flow
freely. Allow pen lifts between letters as desired.
Now go faster and faster with as few pen lifts as
possible. This makes an interesting pattern - free and
full of movement.
Denys' semi-formal flourished
Try them. Forget discipline and enjoy yourself. You
may be surprised at the results even if you are a
beginner. Write with anything you like: a broad-edged
nib, a calligraphic felt pen, brush pen, fibre tip or even
a soft leaded pencil.
Denys says, 'In the beginning when we learn
letters we "draw" them, agonizing over each part.
However, to achieve the grace and beauty of
movement in writing, it is the flow of the hand during
and between letters that is so important. This exercise
allows the student to work on that "air movement"
with pen on paper.
'Try writing to music, staying with the beat, letting
your hand dance freely across the paper.'
Write them agairrireely and rapidly with á pointed
tip. Do not lift the^en^fremjhg-gáper. The movement
of line shows the 'air^!5remenF~t:he pen would have
made if it had been lifted from the paper.