December 6, 2019 0

How to Improve Calligraphy and Lettering – Back to the Basics – Free Work Sheets

How to Improve Calligraphy and Lettering – Back to the Basics – Free Work Sheets

Hi everyone, this is Vivian, welcome back
to my channel. This is Hershey, she is making a lot of noises today so I’m
holding her just while I’m filming. Today we’re going to talk about how to
improve the steadiness of your hand, I’m going to show you a series of
exercise and this is going to be the first of a series of videos. ALso in the description below, you can download the exercise worksheet that I’ll be showing
you. It looks a lot like the basic strokes that you have probably been practicing,
except we’re not going to focus me on the sick and the thin strokes we’re
mainly just going to focusing on the form and the shape that we’re producing
with our hands, so let’s dive in! so to do these practice I would suggest you use some pens that you’re very familiar with, such as a
pencil, or a mechanical pencil, or a regular pen, any ballpoint
pens will do, and if you’re feeling adventurous you can, of course, use a
brush pen. This guide sheet is just practicing straight lines and
I’m going to use tracing paper and write on a tracing paper instead of directly
on the guide sheet, of course, you can write directly on the guide sheet, the reason why I use tracing paper is, first, I don’t have to keep on making more printout, so I can
just read use of new sheets of tracing paper. And second is if you’re using
brush pen on tracing paper is a more gentle surface for your brush pen tip,
and also if you’re practicing on a tracing paper after you practice the whole sheet
you can actually take a look of your practice without the distraction of
these guidelines. I’m going to use a regular mechanical pencil, that way I
don’t have to keep on sharpening and so for the first exercise is to draw a
straight line. It might seem very simple and it might be really easy for you. It’s
just that from my experience I have in teaching calligraphy I realize a lot of
people actually have trouble drawing even just straight lines. So you can do a couple of these to see if you are good at drawing a straight line and it’s not that we do a lot of
straight lines in calligraphy, but it’s just to show you if your hand is steady;
if you have good hand-eye coordination. I’m going to just draw the first few by
tracing it. So the way I designed this specific guide sheet-
the first part you will do a trace second part I have
little marks on the top on the bottom so you can do what I call the connect but
you’re just connecting these two dots and then the last part is you do a
freehand. So there are a few things were looking for, first, obviously, if we want
to have a very straight line second that you want to have equal spacing in all
the lines so that’s where your hand-eye coordination comes in. You want
to be able to just judge the space and then draw a straight line that’s
parallel to the previous one. So at the end they should look like the
flagpoles outside of the UN! and also if you’re using a pencil you can also at the
end check if they have similar darkness. That way you know your pressure
is consistent. And when we’re doing these straight lines. Be careful to have a
definite beginning. As you drag the lines towards you, and then make a full stop. A
definite stop. by that I mean if we use the magnifier to look at this
line this should be equally sick from the beginning to the end so they should
not be anything like that. So
that’s like a very intentional stop Intentional starts and the intentional
stop. And you don’t want to be like mindless stroking, so we don’t
want that either. And it’s also a good way to practice your focus and
concentration. These exercises are a lot more effective if you are actually
present and be mindful of just examing your lines. So try not to be distracted and think about other things. But try to really see and exam each line that you
draw, if you focus while you practice it’s a lot more effective and you will
see the difference when you start writing calligraphy, so now I finish the first part where I’m just tracing I’m moving on to the part that I’m looking
at these dots and just connecting the dots so there is gonna be a little trickier, so
even though there is dots underneath I still want to be paying attention to make sure that the distance of every line is
the same. Every time I do this exercise it always reminds me in Proverbs it says
there’s a way that seems right or seems straight to a man but it’s way up in death or something like that it’s just how sometimes or often I think I’m
drawing a straight line but then but it actually doesn’t turn out straight. So take your time to draw these lines and be patient
we’re not trying to see who can finish this fast but we want to enjoy drawing
each line okay I’m towards the end of this row
and I will show you what I mean by the benefit of doing it on a tracing paper
so now I finish this row and I can lift up to see, you might notice there
they are not exactly the same height, it’s a little jagged
some are shorter, how strange that I’m tracing this thing and
I have a guideline but somehow I still manage to not make them all the same
height and then the spacing is narrower here, wider here and then the
third is we want to look at the darkness of each stroke, some are darker some are
lighter so this is just a practice to see and to understand your own
hand-eye coordination, and of course we are not robots, so there’s no way
you can draw lines like this, but now at least we know where the problem is if we have a problem with spacing or problem in controlling our hand pressure, so for the second row, you do also the same and if you really pay attention and be mindful
and be present while doing this just doing two rows will help you a lot in improving you’re pressuring and your spacing And then the third one is
going to be a longer line. So when we write the smaller lines we’re just using
mostly our finger movement and a little bit wrist movement. So this is like a
small muscle that’s controlling this line and when we are
writing bigger, writing longer straight line we start to use more of our elbows
or more wrist depending on what you’re trying to learn
that you if you want to write bigger words then you have to practice
something bigger like a bigger straight line bigger basic strokes to train
your forearm movement, so for the sake of the video I’m going to skip the
second line I’m just going to show you the longer line. Longer line is
trickier because if your wrist is not moving then
you probably end up with the line that’s slightly curved, and that’s just
because of the natural movement is a circle so you want to see how much you need to move your forearm and moving the forearm is a totally new training, and you will notice that holding your pen really
tight does not help. Same with writing the smaller lines holding it gripping it
really hard really doesn’t help it might have a negative effect. Sometimes I say
that writing calligraphy it’s like dancing with a pen on paper- you want to
hold your partner but you don’t want to choke your partner, in this case
we don’t want to choke our pen I can already see these are quite crooked.
But since we are just practicing so I’m not even going to bother to erase them. I’m
just gonna keep going. Now when it comes to these longer lines that Proverb really
plays out- you think you’re writing straight- oops no you’re not… and also another tendency that I see
that I have and other people also have is that you see one line that you draw
is crooked then you want to make the next one perfect so your grip your pen tighter or you force it more, but it ends up that it’s still not perfect so you just keep on going and
then it only gets worse so if you find yourself in that kind of situation just relax your hand a little bit and then start over okay so now we’re towards the end, I am finishing these two rolls and you know the funny thing is that these should be all the same
spacing but somehow mine doesn’t end up lining up. So now we finished a
straight line let’s try a slanted version of a straight line.But this time
we’re going to do it upward, it’s like a upstroke so the first few is going to
be a little funny because writing upward it always feels funny for me. Okay I can
see there’s a little bulge already I don’t know about you but writing upstroke
is not natural for me, and remember take your time, don’t write too fast, this
should be doubled or tripled slower than your normal writing speed.
calligraphy is really a slow art it’s not about writing fast, it’s not a speed
writing technique, that would be scripts or cursive but calligraphy is really
meant for slow, almost like meditating. as I’m writing these lines
I’m writing straight and also I’m constantly gaging my distance as I
write. So now let’s look again I have some spacing issue or in the
beginning they are not in quite straight, it’s a little curve here, I have
some spacing issue. Towards the end it’s a little bit better so you would do the
same. For the sake of this video, I’m not going to make you watch me writing
because I want to do this in real time I’m not going to speed up the video so I
I’m going to skip the second row and move on to the curve one. So same thing,
with the upward strokes you want to maintain equal distance in
every part of the line as you go of course, tracing is easier as you can see now we’re connecting the dots
I know these practice might not be the most exciting ones especially most
people when they learn calligraphy you want to write stuff pretty stuff so writing these
basics drill is not that exciting. But I think these are kind of like the the
building blocks of your writing, it’s kind of like when you’re doing any kind
of instruments practice if you play any instrument , you do a warm-up, usually by
playing the scale and finger movement much more than just a warm-up, because
these are not letter-forms so when you are doing these you are not thinking
what does this word mean or is this an A or is this a D? but you’re really looking at the forms and to understand if your form is smooth and consistent. So the
third row, the same thing, I have trouble in the beginning and and
still, I have an issue with beginning and ending all in the same place there all
right but if I really want to be picky they’re still you know not quite
ending in the same place. I am going to do the curve to the left, so I
know these are not the most exciting practice and I’m not suggesting that you
do this all the time or you do all of the sheets the in the in the package
everyday, that’s why I’m breaking down this video series and suggest one sheet a day and do it however often you think you need
to practice. you might practice quite intensely for a while and
then you think you’re in a very good place then you can mostly do regular writing until maybe at some point you realize
you need to brush up your basic hand-eye coordination then you can come back to
these. I do these when I’m tired of writing quotes. It’s really calming
for me and it just helped me to realize how much not straight my lines
or not consist in my line is. this curve is really bad I can see I think
it’s just horrible okay so now this is the first sheet hope you give it a try like I said
it’s not the most exciting practice it might surprise you how well you’re in
consistency in spacing and in pressure or it might shock you! but I
think this is a really good and basic practice you can use with any pen and
you will realize that with different pen that it really shows different issues that you have, for
instance with this ballpoint pen I think is a lot more sensitive than a pencil so it
shows, even more, the issues I have, such as shakiness and straightness and if you
think this is too easy you can of course move on to using a brush pen. A brush pen will be challenging in different ways so try out different pens you have and
it might surprise you how each pen has a different effect and does different things where you’re drawing with them So you can download this worksheet,
the link is in the description below I’ll also put it in the comment and
there are several pages in the package so we’ll go over the other worksheets in
the future videos. I hope you find this helpful if you do don’t forget to give
it a thumbs up! Thank you so much for watching I’ll see you next time, bye!

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