Jump to content

The Fountain Pen Network uses (functional) cookies. Read the FPN Privacy Policy for more info.  To remove this message, please click here to accept the use of cookies


Registration on the Fountain Pen Network

Dearest Visitor of the little Fountain Pen Nut house on the digital prairie,

Due to the enormous influx of spammers, it is no longer possible to handle valditions in the traditional way. For registrations we therefore kindly and respectfully request you to send an email with your request to our especially created email address. This email address is register at fountainpennetwork dot com. Please include your desired user name, and after validation we will send you a return email containing the validation key, normally wiithin a week.

Thank you very much in advance!
The FPN Admin Team






Photo

Help Improving My Handwriting

improve handwriting handwriting improve cursive

  • Please log in to reply
22 replies to this topic

#1 Vunter

Vunter

    Mint

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPip
  • 72 posts
  • Location:Minneapolis
  • Flag:

Posted 17 September 2016 - 14:28

I just recently got into the fountain pen hobby.  Just this past couple of weeks I purchased a few pens, inks, and paper.  I created a separate thread about the pens and inks I was looking into and eventually purchased if anyone is interested.  That thread can be found at this link:

http://www.fountainp...-fountain-pens/

 

I'm really enjoying my pens and inks, but the real reason why I was able to get interested in pens so fast besides all the shinies!!! lol; was the goal of improving my handwriting.  I am in the computer science field so handwriting kind of went to the back burner as I primarily take notes on my laptop; I however just went back to college to finish up my degree.  I have in the past enjoyed writing poems, notes, etc... so the want and need to improve my writing is there.

To start improving my handwriting I decided that writing whenever possible is a good place to start since practice makes perfect.  I decided to start taking my college notes on paper first, along with grocery lists instead of using my mobile phone, and any other notes I may take throughout my day.  Anything I want to keep I just scan into OneNote at the end of the week to have it in digital form.  I think my handwriting is terrible; however, I noticed my cursive is a lot better than it used to be since I started using fountain pens; my printed writing is way worse.  My everyday workhorse/fast style of writing tends to be between cursive and printed. 

Now that I have given a little background of my intentions and goals I can get to my question.  Are there any good sites, youtube channels, or any other type of media out there that is widely considered to be the best or most respected in terms of improving handwriting.  I would greatly appreciate any guidance in terms of where to look to help me improve my writing.  

Here is a writing sample of my writing.  I don't know why but I was nervous posting this lol. 
writingSample.jpg

 



Sponsored Content

#2 Rednaxela

Rednaxela

    Vintage

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 465 posts
  • Location:The Netherlands
  • Flag:

Posted 17 September 2016 - 16:02

I like this video on the subject. Perhaps there is something in it for you too.


~ Alexander

#3 LizEF

LizEF

    Antique

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,833 posts
  • Flag:

Posted 17 September 2016 - 16:16

Vunter,

 

I'd say your handwriting is pretty good.  (I've seen a lot worse - my own included, when I don't pay attention.)  The good news is that the nib you're using looks like a good size for your writing ("e" doesn't have the loop filled in, lines aren't too skinny for the letter size).

 

I was in the same boat as you after getting my first fountain pens at the start of this year (after a 22 year break :o ), so I did lots of googling and YouTubing and discovered some very disappointing news: the only way to improve your handwriting is through intentional, careful, regular practice!  I was so disappointed not to find a quick, easy fix. :)

 

I second above video - it's a good one.  Also, I found that French-ruled paper has helped me (but I write small, which seems to be what that paper is designed for).  You can make your own French-ruled template with larger guides than the Clairefontaine paper has, for example.  (I have a MS Word document in this format which I could put on the web for download - you could then edit it to increase the size of the rows to something that fits your writing style - if you want, let me know.)

 

Finally, I would recommend checking out a few videos and search results to see which style you think you would like (do you want to learn something fancy, like Spencerian, or just improve your own style, or...?).  Once you figure that out, you can ask more pointed questions, and focus your practice accordingly.  For example, for me, there are some letters (like the lower case r) that I want to change how I write - so I practice and practice those.  There are other letters I like how I write, so I don't need to practice those as much.  Then there's consistent spacing and letter height - so, it' helps to do a self-evaluation to identify problem areas, and then to make examples of the ideal form for each of your letters - so you can refer to that for practice.

 

Hope that helps!

 

Liz



#4 Adi_007

Adi_007

    NOS (New Old Stock)

  • Member - Silver

  • PipPip
  • 20 posts
  • Flag:

Posted 17 September 2016 - 17:04

Well Vunter, your handwriting almost resembles mine and with good suggestions from LizEF and others we can improve our handwriting.



#5 ac12

ac12

    Museum Piece

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 9,529 posts
  • Location:San Francisco Bay Area, California, USA - SFO
  • Flag:

Posted 18 September 2016 - 03:41

It isn't just writing, but trying to write like you want to.

IOW don't just keep writing your old bad handwriting.

For me this meant SLOWING DOWN and writing at a liesurely pace, then I can control the pen.

 

I hit Iampeth to get old Palmer and other instruction manuals.


San Francisco Pen Show - August 28-30, 2020 - Redwood City, California

www.SFPenShow.com


#6 Eaglesong

Eaglesong

    NOS (New Old Stock)

  • Member - Silver

  • PipPip
  • 14 posts
  • Location:California, USA
  • Flag:

Posted 18 September 2016 - 05:30

The Art Of Manliness (an exceptional resource for just about EVERYTHING) has a couple of articles on handwriting that reference some videos and books that can help.  http://www.artofmanl...ve-handwriting/

 

Your handwriting looks amazingly like mine.  I found that writing with a fountain pen helped with my handwriting for (I believe) two primary reasons.  The first is that you have to write with a very light touch.  The other is a tidbit I picked up on a video that suggested writing with your arm and wrist instead of your fingers.  I have found that my writing is far smoother and well formed when I move the pen with my arm and hand rather than my fingers.  It's almost like I'm reteaching my muscles how to write and I'm able to bypass all the bad habits that my fingers learned over the years.

 

As another member said though, your handwriting is much better than some people's.  If you want yours to look better just hold it up beside some of the posts here or a couple of your grandmother's old recipe cards.  It'll look amazing in comparison ;-)



#7 Vunter

Vunter

    Mint

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPip
  • 72 posts
  • Location:Minneapolis
  • Flag:

Posted 18 September 2016 - 16:49

I appreciate all the advice, tips, and links you guys sent over.  I have been using the links and watching the videos and it has provided some good tips for me.  Before I created this thread yesterday I watched this video series that was a little helpful.

http://monkeysee.com...ve-handwriting/

 

Some of the videos in that series are repetitive, but the practice tips she gave I found useful.  I also generally only struggle with a few letters.  Like b, d, z, and k.  I also have to practice capital letters more also.  A couple of people mentioned Spencerian and Palmer;  I'll probably check this out just to see what the material is like.  I have been practicing between 20mins and 1 hour a day for the last week.  I generally practice writing until I loose focus or my hand gets fatigued. I also do realize that it's not going to change overnight.

I already started to see and improvement.  For instance, at the start of the week, I struggled with capital L's and capital I's, but just by looking up several ways to write them I already by the end of the week could write them quite well.  Anyways all the help has been much appreciated. 



#8 LizEF

LizEF

    Antique

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,833 posts
  • Flag:

Posted 18 September 2016 - 22:44

Thanks for the update, Vunter!  Glad you're making progress - at 20+ minutes / day, I'm sure you'll get better fast.



#9 Bobje

Bobje

    We're all bozos on this bus.

  • FPN Super Moderators

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,926 posts
  • Location:North Carolina
  • Flag:

Posted 19 September 2016 - 00:32

Welcome to a wonderful hobby with a global community of like-minded people, Vunter. You're in good company. The computer scientist Edsger Dijkstra famously wrote code with a Montblanc fountain pen. 

 

My suggestion would be Fred Eager's book "The Italic Way to Beautiful Handwriting," available used for a few dollars on Amazon or Abebooks, and watching the YouTube videos of the late Lloyd Reynolds of Reed College.

 


Reviews and articles on Fountain Pen Network

 

CHINA, JAPAN, AND INDIA

Hua Hong Blue Belter Penbbs 456 | Stationery | ASA Nauka in Dartmoor and Ebonite | ASA Azaadi | ASA Bheeshma | ASA Halwa | Ranga Model 8 and 8b | Ranga Emperor

ITALY AND THE UK

FILCAO Roxi | FILCAO Atlantica | Italix Churchman's Prescriptor

USA, INK, AND EXPERIMENTS

Bexley Prometheus | Route 54 Motor Oil | Black Swan in Icelandic Minty Bathwater | Robert Oster Aqua | Diamine Emerald Green | Mr. Pen Radiant Blue | Three Oysters Giwa | Flex Nib Modifications | Rollstoppers


#10 akustyk

akustyk

    Collectors Item

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,439 posts
  • Location:Poznań, Poland
  • Flag:

Posted 19 September 2016 - 17:48

Welcome to a wonderful hobby with a global community of like-minded people, Vunter. You're in good company. The computer scientist Edsger Dijkstra famously wrote code with a Montblanc fountain pen. 

 

My suggestion would be Fred Eager's book "The Italic Way to Beautiful Handwriting," available used for a few dollars on Amazon or Abebooks, and watching the YouTube videos of the late Lloyd Reynolds of Reed College.

 

 

Excellent suggestion! I also believe that italic (or cursive italic) is the most realistic, beautiful hand that anyone can learn. Sure, it will take a lot of practice, but the results will be satisfying, and the improvement in legibility substantial. It seems to me, though, that more people are new to fountain pens are more interested in learning traditional cursive. I am not sure why that is. It would be interesting to try to find out why.


---

Please, visit my website at http://www.acousticpens.com/


#11 Vunter

Vunter

    Mint

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPip
  • 72 posts
  • Location:Minneapolis
  • Flag:

Posted 19 September 2016 - 19:07

 

Excellent suggestion! I also believe that italic (or cursive italic) is the most realistic, beautiful hand that anyone can learn. Sure, it will take a lot of practice, but the results will be satisfying, and the improvement in legibility substantial. It seems to me, though, that more people are new to fountain pens are more interested in learning traditional cursive. I am not sure why that is. It would be interesting to try to find out why.

Are you asking why more people like myself included are interested in learning traditional cursive versus something different like cursive italic, or some other fancy style like CopperPlate or something along those lines?  

Well, I can only speak for myself in terms of why I want to improve my traditional cursive first before moving on to more advanced styles.  The simplest reason being is I have a firm belief that no matter what you are doing that a solid foundation of the basics must be intact before building on top of that.  I want my traditional cursive / my personal cursive style to look good, feel good, and flow out of me naturally; once I reach that point I will then start to incorporate other more stylistic scripts. 



#12 akustyk

akustyk

    Collectors Item

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,439 posts
  • Location:Poznań, Poland
  • Flag:

Posted 20 September 2016 - 17:16

Are you asking why more people like myself included are interested in learning traditional cursive versus something different like cursive italic, or some other fancy style like CopperPlate or something along those lines?  

Well, I can only speak for myself in terms of why I want to improve my traditional cursive first before moving on to more advanced styles.  The simplest reason being is I have a firm belief that no matter what you are doing that a solid foundation of the basics must be intact before building on top of that.  I want my traditional cursive / my personal cursive style to look good, feel good, and flow out of me naturally; once I reach that point I will then start to incorporate other more stylistic scripts. 

 

Yes, that's what I was wondering. Thank you so much for your detailed and interesting response!


---

Please, visit my website at http://www.acousticpens.com/


#13 Vunter

Vunter

    Mint

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPip
  • 72 posts
  • Location:Minneapolis
  • Flag:

Posted 20 September 2016 - 17:45

 

Yes, that's what I was wondering. Thank you so much for your detailed and interesting response!

 

I should clarify my response a bit because my cursive is only technically traditional.  I have taken a different style approach for a few of my letters.  So when I mean improve my traditional cursive I really mean improve my handwriting to be more legible with a bit more flow.

At the end of the day though I want my handwriting to be mine; to be personal.  So my goal to improve the basics in my own writing is more about technique than it is specifically how to write a certain letter.

Once I am happy with my everyday cursive I will then start to take on styles influenced by CopperPlate and Italic.  I should clarify My capital letters will take on those styles while my lowercase letters will be more simple.  I do like flourishes, but I appreciate subtly more so than an entire letter written with every single letter and word with flourishes.



#14 akustyk

akustyk

    Collectors Item

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,439 posts
  • Location:Poznań, Poland
  • Flag:

Posted 20 September 2016 - 18:30

 

I should clarify my response a bit because my cursive is only technically traditional.  I have taken a different style approach for a few of my letters.  So when I mean improve my traditional cursive I really mean improve my handwriting to be more legible with a bit more flow.

At the end of the day though I want my handwriting to be mine; to be personal.  So my goal to improve the basics in my own writing is more about technique than it is specifically how to write a certain letter.

Once I am happy with my everyday cursive I will then start to take on styles influenced by CopperPlate and Italic.  I should clarify My capital letters will take on those styles while my lowercase letters will be more simple.  I do like flourishes, but I appreciate subtly more so than an entire letter written with every single letter and word with flourishes.

 

I think this is a very reasonable approach, and, I am sure, it will prove successful! It also proves that everyone is different. I found traditional cursive to be very hard, and cursive italic a little easier, but, by no means, easy. But, I do agree with you that it's best to work on your own style, at least in the beginning. And only you know when it looks good enough and when it still needs work. It's personal, after all.

 

Copperplate to me is more like drawing than writing, so I haven't even touched it yet :). It's more of a calligrapher's style than us, mere mortals. Good luck!


---

Please, visit my website at http://www.acousticpens.com/


#15 Vunter

Vunter

    Mint

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPip
  • 72 posts
  • Location:Minneapolis
  • Flag:

Posted 20 September 2016 - 19:00

 

I think this is a very reasonable approach, and, I am sure, it will prove successful! It also proves that everyone is different. I found traditional cursive to be very hard, and cursive italic a little easier, but, by no means, easy. But, I do agree with you that it's best to work on your own style, at least in the beginning. And only you know when it looks good enough and when it still needs work. It's personal, after all.

 

Copperplate to me is more like drawing than writing, so I haven't even touched it yet :). It's more of a calligrapher's style than us, mere mortals. Good luck!

I agree that CopperPlate is more like calligraphy. I plan to use a more a calligraphic style; i.e. more flourishes on salutations, terms of endearment, capitals, and signatures.  All else will remain somewhat normal cursive.  I just picked up some Pilot Parallels and I am going to start with Foundational Calligraphy first. I think Foundational itself looks pretty cool; obviously not all fancy like other calligraphic styles.  To be honest, everything I'm doing is all academic; because all the letters I have sent thus far even though I thought the writing lacked; they were regarded as impressive and made the day for the recipient.  

I have stated what got me started with fountain pens at the top of this thread and in my other threads, but I would be lying if I didn't also mention that part of my interest in the hobby is in large part of wooing a woman lol.  My success on that front has been very successful even with my writing not looking so great;  I have noticed that in writing letters that different things are said between me and her that don't nearly have the same impact on any other platform whether it be speech, texting, email, or calling.   Anyways my relationship with her really fuels my interest in the hobby even further.  Upon her request for the next month were keeping our correspondence only in letter form, because she enjoyed getting them so much lol.  I'm rambling; so improving my writing is in no other certain terms; very fruitful :-).


Edited by Vunter, 20 September 2016 - 19:01.


#16 akustyk

akustyk

    Collectors Item

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,439 posts
  • Location:Poznań, Poland
  • Flag:

Posted 20 September 2016 - 19:32

I agree that CopperPlate is more like calligraphy. I plan to use a more a calligraphic style; i.e. more flourishes on salutations, terms of endearment, capitals, and signatures.  All else will remain somewhat normal cursive.  I just picked up some Pilot Parallels and I am going to start with Foundational Calligraphy first. I think Foundational itself looks pretty cool; obviously not all fancy like other calligraphic styles.  To be honest, everything I'm doing is all academic; because all the letters I have sent thus far even though I thought the writing lacked; they were regarded as impressive and made the day for the recipient.  

I have stated what got me started with fountain pens at the top of this thread and in my other threads, but I would be lying if I didn't also mention that part of my interest in the hobby is in large part of wooing a woman lol.  My success on that front has been very successful even with my writing not looking so great;  I have noticed that in writing letters that different things are said between me and her that don't nearly have the same impact on any other platform whether it be speech, texting, email, or calling.   Anyways my relationship with her really fuels my interest in the hobby even further.  Upon her request for the next month were keeping our correspondence only in letter form, because she enjoyed getting them so much lol.  I'm rambling; so improving my writing is in no other certain terms; very fruitful :-).

 

 

First of all, congratulations on your relationship! And what a phenomenal reason to get into handwriting improvement. I remember when I was very young learning a foreign language to impress a woman, which is not unlike learning handwriting, a hopelessly complex task, but with sweet rewards. Your post made my day!


---

Please, visit my website at http://www.acousticpens.com/


#17 Sasha Royale

Sasha Royale

    Ancient Artifact

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 14,444 posts
  • Flag:

Posted 20 September 2016 - 20:39

I find your handwriting completely legible !   However, it is good not to be satisfied.  Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.  How would you like your handwriting to look ?   Now, slow down.  Deliberately form each character as you wish it to appear.  (It's okay to steal shapes from others.)  Find reasons / excuses to practice.

 

Improvement comes quickly.  My penmanship progressed, overnight, from  " inside-of-a-goat's-stomach-isho " chicken-scratch ".  (Mom is sooooo proud.)   

 

Write with joy.


Auf freiem Grund mit freiem Volke stehn. 
Zum Augenblicke dürft ich sagen: 
Verweile doch, du bist so schön ! 


#18 Vunter

Vunter

    Mint

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPip
  • 72 posts
  • Location:Minneapolis
  • Flag:

Posted 20 September 2016 - 21:46

I find your handwriting completely legible !   However, it is good not to be satisfied.  Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.  How would you like your handwriting to look ?   Now, slow down.  Deliberately form each character as you wish it to appear.  (It's okay to steal shapes from others.)  Find reasons / excuses to practice.

 

Improvement comes quickly.  My penmanship progressed, overnight, from  " inside-of-a-goat's-stomach-isho " chicken-scratch ".  (Mom is sooooo proud.)   

 

Write with joy.

I would agree with you that I don't want to be perfect as I want my writing to have uniqueness. I also do write slowly; especially when I'm writing letters.  I generally spend anywhere between 30mins to 3hours writing my letters depending on what the letter contains and what it means to me and the recipient.  I write much more slowly then say if I'm taking notes.  I usually write my words and sentences very slowly; this makes me feel good, which in turn makes what I am saying to be more sincere.  

Having said all that the improvement I am hoping accomplish will, in turn, make my every day/rapid style of writing better; like when I am taking notes or something.  The more and more I write the more I'm not being so judgemental of it so much.  I have handwriting goals nonetheless, though.  You bring up a good point; and thats joy.  I am making sure to not let it be work or a chore; hence why I am taking things slow and letting my handwriting progress at a natural pace.



#19 FOUR X FOUR

FOUR X FOUR

    Antique

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,374 posts
  • Location:Florida
  • Flag:

Posted 21 September 2016 - 01:49

Your handwriting looks fine. At best, it could be said that your handwriting isn't fancy. Fancy and bad are 2 different things. Your words are perfectly legible

#20 ac12

ac12

    Museum Piece

  • Member - Gold

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 9,529 posts
  • Location:San Francisco Bay Area, California, USA - SFO
  • Flag:

Posted 21 September 2016 - 19:34

A few notes.

 

You said you ". . . generally practice writing until I loose focus or my hand gets fatigued."

This tells me that you may be gripping your pen TIGHT.

I suggest you loosen up and learn to hold the pen with a light grip.  If you hold your pen, you should be able to easily pull the pen out from your hand, with the other hand.  A light grip prevents hand cramps.  In college I would have to constantly shake my hand, to prevent it from cramping.  And I could not write well with a cramped hand.

 

"I write much more slowly then say if I'm taking notes.  I usually write my words and sentences very slowly"

I suggest you experiment here.

I found that there is a certain minimum speed that I have to write each stroke at.  Any slower and my writing looks shaky.

But note that I said "write each STROKE at."  You do not have to write the entire word at a constant speed, just the individual strokes.

Example the upper case/capital M

- short upstroke

- pause

- down stroke

- pause

- hump

- pause

- hump

- tail stroke

This is somewhat of an exaggeration, but many letters have natural pauses in them, usually where you change directions.

Finding YOUR minimum stroke speed is experimental.  You just have to try and see what is comfortable and gives you a smooth stroke.


San Francisco Pen Show - August 28-30, 2020 - Redwood City, California

www.SFPenShow.com






Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: improve handwriting, handwriting, improve, cursive



Sponsored Content




|