You know nothing John Snow

Handwriting course week 3

Everything I know is about to change....that's why I have picked this title.

Just when I'm starting to get comfortable with all the drills, letters and connections we took a 180-degree turn.

Things are about to get ugly in order to get better. My tutor handed out the printouts of different writing styles and let people choose. I got just one piece of paper...with....s-p-e-n-c-e-r-i-a-n-s-t-y-l-e!!!!! :o (If you don't know what Spencerian is I urge you, look it up!) Luckily, it was just a joke! She wasn't messing around when I got second piece of paper with Angular Italic writing style - apparently that is the one I HAVE TO GO FOR. Why? Why? I honestly don't know...perhaps so I can use my custom grind Lamy 2000 fountain pen? That is not the reason, but it's what I keep telling myself ;)

I used to do something similar last summer in my Leuchtturm dot notebook - looking at these letters now I had no idea what I was doing :) Here is an example of how not to connect letters...

handwriting my old notebooks, full of wrong letters :)

What happens next? No more 1-hour drills. Just warm up and start writing, every line counts. My goal is to think, breathe, write in Angular Italic. When I'm not writing, I am doing virtual flicks with my hand...Building awareness and consciousness just like muscle memory. Surprising, isn't it? Everything I write down from now on has to be 100%. That is the hard part, to concentrate on every stroke. Writing sentences, seems so far away :))))))) perhaps in next life! So far I can do letters: l,i,t,u,y,n,m,h,b :)

If you follow my story, you know that I bought Seyes handwriting book. These are great when your writing is all over the place. Clairefontaine is fountain pen friendly paper of superb quality. Problem is, that you can't just get one and start writing because they do not come with a guide. You are in for a surprise when you open the book, so many lines! So complicated! These lines are supposed to help you keep the size of your letters consistent. Here is what I have picked up on Instagram this week. A neat little "how to use French grid aka Seyes paper" :

platignum pen Seyes - French grid

Lower case bodies go up to the first line
dt loops go up to the second line
Capitals and bfhkl loops go up to the third line
Hoops of fgjpqy (z) go down two lines

Best advice: my initial goal of slowing down has transformed into never rush any writing. I am also staying away from hoops and loops for now.

Shopping list: if you see a nice Italic letter S, please do let me know ;)

So many questions this week...Will I be able to use 1.1mm nib again? How will I implement this new style into everyday writing? I honestly cannot wait to see what the next lesson will bring.

Mishka (^_~)

2 thoughts on “You know nothing John Snow”

  • Natalia

    I loved reading about your calligraphy course! A few years back I decided to change to italic writing, and I followed some hints and materials from Gunnlaugur Briem ( You might also find them useful. I still think my penmanship can be improved, but it is much easier to keep it neat than my old cursive.

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