Best calligraphy classes: Explore the timeless art of handwriting

Written by:

Published:

While calligraphy may spark the image of an elderly, long-bearded dude holding a quill pen, the truth is that this age-old craft has become a trendy means of artistic expression for modern-day creatives.

Whether through an advertising campaign, a music festival billboard, or a funky tote bag design, calligraphy has made its way into pop culture and can be spotted just about anywhere! 

Practiced by manual artists as well as digital devotees, taking a few calligraphy classes can be a great way to boost your business, create an impact on social media, or enjoy a new creative hobby.  

If this sounds like a plan, continue reading for the best calligraphy classes you can take online!

Affiliate disclosure: Articles on Tiny Workshops may contain affiliate links.

How to choose the best calligraphy classes for you

Whether you want to refresh your skillset or are embarking on a business venture, one thing is certain: learning something new always comes in handy.

That said, there are a few things to keep in mind when choosing the best online calligraphy classes for you. 

Check if course durations are compatible with your availability; this varies per platform, teacher, and lesson plan. Although most of the calligraphy classes on our guide offer unlimited access after purchase, my advice is to select a course that you can commit to and feel motivated about. 

Read also: The best online course platforms for creatives

Finding the perfect spot to work from and a comfortable craft desk is also very important: make sure to watch your posture!

Watching the course trailers on each platform can also be helpful. By doing so, you’ll be able to briefly meet your teachers, get a taste of the projects you’ll do, and know what materials are required to complete tasks. 

Because payment methods and prices differ on each platform, find the one that is most convenient for you. Whether you prefer to purchase individual courses on Domestika and Udemy or favor a subscription on Skillshare, all options guarantee very reasonable prices.

Best calligraphy classes 

To help you get started, we’ve narrowed down a list of our favorite online calligraphy classes (and some extra suggestions!) that combine affordability, content quality, and engaging tutors. 

Intro to Digital Calligraphy in Procreate

Intro to Digital Calligraphy in Procreate Skillshare

Teacher: Lyndsay Hubley
Platform: Skillshare
Level: Beginner

Duration: 12 Lessons (1h 13m)
Audio: English
Subtitles: Yes (CC)

In this Skillshare course for beginners, Canadian illustrator Lyndsay Hubley will guide you through the ins and outs of the popular illustration app Procreate and show you how to transform your manual work into a digital dream. 

Through practice templates and insider tips, you’ll learn how to overcome challenges and take your work to the next level. Procreate fundamentals and shortcuts, techniques to develop a personal style, and advice on successfully importing/exporting work are just some of the topics covered. 

Read also: Best iPads for Procreate to suit all budgets

Note that although an iPad and the Procreate app are strongly advised for this course, Lyndsay reassures you that a pencil and paper will do the trick to start out: you can always take notes as you learn and get the basics down.

If you want to complement this course by taking a few more calligraphy classes that are a little more comprehensive, I highly recommend Calligraphy and Lettering Fundamentals in Procreate and Lettering with Procreate: Master the App.

Before signing up for Skillshare Premium, save some cash by enjoying a free, one-month trial by clicking below!

Uncial Calligraphy for Beginners

Uncial Calligraphy for Beginners Domestika

Teacher: Joaquín Seguí
Platform: Domestika
Level: Beginner

Duration: 18 Lessons (3h 13m)
Audio: Spanish
Subtitles: Yes (CC)

One of the many calligraphy classes on Domestika we love is this beginners course featuring Joaquín Seguí, who will dive into the origins of calligraphy and share his knowledge on the ancient art of uncial lettering. 

With 10 years of experience under his belt, the graphic designer discusses the importance of uncial calligraphy and how it has inspired modern-day design.

Read also: Best calligraphy sets

If you’ve never heard of uncial lettering, it’s the stereotypical calligraphic typeface used by scribes in Latin, Greek, and Gothic more than 1500 years ago. In other words, exactly what you’d think of when thinking of hand-written calligraphy.

Joaquín will go over his references, teach you basic tracing skills, how to draw with ink and a flat feather, and grasp the concept of proportion and style. The final project is to create a stylized version of your city’s name, which you’ll then digitize to print on a postcard.

More Domestika calligraphy classes we suggest related to old-time lettering styles include Introduction to Italic Calligraphy, Calligraphy with Powerful Gothics, and Design and Creation of Victorian-Style Lettering. Subscribing to Domestika Plus is a great way to enjoy them all with great bundle discounts!

Shodo: An Introduction to Japanese Calligraphy

Shodo An Introduction to Japanese Calligraphy classes Domestika

Teacher: Rie Takeda
Platform: Domestika.
Level: Beginner

Duration: 16 Lessons (2h 13m)
Audio: English
Subtitles: Yes (CC)

Who knew calligraphy classes could also inspire a state of zen? Taught by Rie Takeda, this Domestika course revolves around the art of Japanese calligraphy known as Shodo.

This beginner’s course is an excellent choice if you want to explore something new beyond modern calligraphy. Encouraging beginners to leave their comfort zone, the Shodo expert will teach you the meaning behind certain characters, how to calm the mind with every brushstroke, and the importance of flow.

Read also: Best origami kits

Applying basic styles and writing Kanji are some of the skills you’ll put to the test during this course. It’s also important to know beforehand that you’ll need a brush and ink vs a standard calligraphy pen if you want to complete the class project: to know more about the materials needed for this course, click the button below.

If you’re like me and are fascinated by ancient legacies of handwritten art, I’m pretty sure you’ll enjoy the following calligraphy classes too: Introduction to Arabic Calligraphy: Maghrebi ScriptArabic Calligraphy: Learn Kufic ScriptIntroduction to Hebrew Calligraphy, and Introduction to Chinese Calligraphy.

Brush Pen Modern Calligraphy

Brush Pen Modern Calligraphy classes Udemy

Teacher: Vivian Uang
Platform: Udemy
Level: Beginner

Duration: 19 Lessons (1h 25m)
Audio: English
Subtitles: Yes (CC)

This best-selling calligraphy class on Udemy is taught by New York-based designer Vivian Uang and is the perfect pick for beginners who want to learn modern calligraphy with a brush pen.

Showing you different techniques, from brush strokes to flourishing, Vivian will go over the fundamentals of modern calligraphy from scratch. You’ll learn how to construct letterforms, master consistent lines, and curves, and be encouraged to keep practicing with printable worksheets.

To complete this course, having a set of hard and/or soft brush pens, a pad of tracing paper, and a printer to download resources is highly recommended. And if you enjoy Vivian’s content, be sure to check out her more advanced calligraphy course here.

I also really love Vivian’s fun approach to the craft with her unique lesson, Learn Calligraphy with Crayola Markers. It’s definitely one of the most out-of-the-box calligraphy classes I’ve come across!

Domestika also offers a similar course for a slightly lower price: Principles of Brush Pen Calligraphy.

Creative Calligraphy: Find Your Style with a Sketchbook 

Creative Calligraphy: Find Your Style with a Sketchbook

Teacher: João Varela
Platform: Domestika
Level: Beginner

Duration: 15 Lessons (2h 37m)
Audio: English
Subtitles: Yes (CC)

This Domestika course is taught by lettering artist João Varela who, in the span of two hours, will show you how to transfer your personal visual language into a sketchbook.

During this course, you’ll learn about the fundamentals of traditional calligraphy and the evolution of lettering styles. You’ll draw lines and glyphs to practice and experiment with single strokes before jumping into complete words-building.

Read also: Best book binding glues

João will show you how to reinvent classic tools to create new letterform designs and go over how to scale up letters and apply ink for different effects. And best of all, you’ll make a sketchbook from scratch featuring your lettering exercises! You’ll learn about bookbinding, including how to cut, stitch, and glue your final piece together.

With this know-how, you’ll be able to create all the sketchbooks you want to register samples you cherish for future reference and inspiration. While for beginners, I think this is a helpful class for all skill levels since it’s more about the creative process vs technique.

I also really like the perk of getting some basic binding techniques under your belt! Other calligraphy classes we recommend around this theme are Typography Sketchbook: Drawing Letters with Style and Hand-Lettering Sketchbook: Techniques to Unlock Creativity.

Calligraphy and Lettering for Custom Garments

Calligraphy for custom garments

Teacher: Iván Caíña
Platform: Domestika
Level: Beginner

Duration: 15 Lessons (2h 42m)
Audio: Spanish
Subtitles: Yes (CC)

This Domestika course will teach you how to apply bold lettering and calligraphy art to garments. 

Artist and designer Iván Caíña will be your instructor for this almost three-hour-long course, during which he’ll share his undeniable enthusiasm for the art of calligraphy and show you the ins and outs of creating an impactful statement piece with just a few skills.

Read also: Best fabric spray paint

During this class, you’ll create a project from scratch. Well, kind of! You’ll use a denim piece of clothing as the surface on which you’ll apply your customized calligraphy illustration. 

This is the perfect class if you are searching for creative ways to pursue the art of handwriting — and a particularly enticing option for fans of mixed-medium experimentation. 

If you’re into fashion design and screen printing techniques, this is also a great place to find inspiration for personal or professional apparel-related projects. Taking a few sewing or fashion illustration classes is also a way to learn more about combining both art forms. 

70s Lettering 

70s Lettering Skillshare class

Teacher: Liz Kohler Brown
Platform: Skillshare
Level: Intermediate

Duration: 13 Lessons (1h 49m)
Audio: English
Subtitles: Yes (CC)

70s-inspired art is taking over the design world, and graphic designer Liz Kohler Brown is here to teach you how to become an expert in bold, colorful lettering. It’s time to put some groove into your handwriting!

Positioned as a Skillshare favorite, your teacher will show you how to create bell-bottom lettering compositions, use analog and digital resources for inspiration, and will even give you tips on coming up with unique 70s-like quotes for your projects— far out!

Read also: Best Adobe Illustrator classes

Liz will also provide seven texture brushes to help you recreate a vintage vibe, plus access to color palettes and downloadable practice sheets. After this course, you’ll be set to design just about anything, whether invitations for your best friend’s wedding or a unique logo for your new online business!

Interested? Subscribe to Skillshare Premium or check out the platform’s free, one-month trial! That’s more than enough time to enjoy all of the best calligraphy classes the platform has to offer.

More fun, digital-driven calligraphy classes we recommend are Adobe Illustrator for Typography, Lettering and Calligraphy, and Calligraphy and Lettering for Instagram with Procreate.

Vintage Lettering: Custom Compositions From Scratch

Vintage Lettering Custom Compositions from Scratch

Teacher: Mark van Leeuwen
Platform: Domestika
Level: Beginner

Duration: 15 Lessons (2h 03m)
Audio: English
Subtitles: Yes (CC)

Boasting an enviable background working with renowned brands like Cadillac, Apple Music, and Etsy, during this Domestika course, Dutch lettering artist Mark van Leeuwen will teach you how to create an original typeform composition from scratch. 

During this class, your teacher will take you on a visual journey throughout the decades and cover the art of vintage typography and lettering. Using vintage pop culture references and a mood board, you’ll learn handwritten lettering techniques and how to bring your work to life in Procreate.

Read also: 15 best Domestika courses in English (plus 5 in Spanish)

Mark will teach you how to use the software to give your compositions dynamic swirls and flourishes. You’ll also learn more technical aspects, such as styling, contrast, and weight, to master refining your work like a pro.

And, of course, you’ll put your skills to the test with a class project: creating a customized vintage-themed typographic composition from scratch. Keep in mind that this isn’t your typical calligraphy course but rather an insight into mixing modern typography and classic handwriting techniques.

If you’re all about this theme, Retro Hand-Lettering: Embracing Imperfections is also worth adding to your Domestika Plus bundle! However, if you’re aiming for more traditional calligraphy techniques, Calligraphy for an Ex Libris and Modern Pointed-Pen Calligraphy below are likely to be what you’re after. 

The Art of Record Covers: Illustration Meets Lettering

The Art of Record Cover Lettering

Teacher: Steve Simpson
Platform: Domestika
Level: Beginner

Duration: 15 Lessons (1h 27m)
Audio: English
Subtitles: Yes (CC)

Next up is one of my favorite lettering and calligraphy classes on Domestika; perfect for creative thinkers and — music lovers!

Your teacher, Steve Simpson, will lead the way during this Domestika course and guide you through the process of combining the art of illustration with calligraphy and typography to create stunning record covers and designs.

You’ll learn how to brainstorm and source inspiration, sketch ideas, transfer designs, apply color palettes, and more. In addition, Steve will show you how to blend beautiful hand-drawn letters and typography into a single piece to form a coherent, seamless record cover design.

I love this course’s originality and how it covers applying illustration techniques to enhance lettering. Needless to say, these are skills you’ll be able to apply to a variety of projects! For instance, Playful Hand-Lettering for Children’s Book Illustration on Domestika shares a similar approach — and we also totally recommend it!

Just an hour and a half long, this course is for anyone who wants to learn something refreshing and creative, and most importantly, have fun! You won’t be getting into elaborate techniques or extensive explanations here; this one is about getting your creative juices flowing and finding inspiration!

Calligraphy for an Ex Libris 

Calligraphy for an Ex Libris Domestika course

Teacher: Ricardo Rousselot Schmidt
Platform: Domestika
Level: Intermediate

Duration: 17 Lessons (3h 26m)
Audio: Spanish
Subtitles: Yes (CC)

Designer and ex-libris aficionado Ricardo Rousselot Schmidt is the star of this Domestika calligraphy class which focuses on adapting ancient styles of the art form for all kinds of applications.

In this case, it’s all about ex libris (or bookplates), which are the decorative stamps or labels pasted into books to declare ownership. Often these are incredibly intricate and combine calligraphy with design flourishes using only ink and a quill pen.

Read also: Best bone folders

Having a deeply personal relationship with calligraphy, Ricardo will share how he was introduced to the world of ex libris, the origin of this craft, and the sentimental value that comes with it.

A quill pen, ink, and tracing paper are the main materials you will need for your project: creating a beautiful ex libris for yourself or any book-lover in your life.  As I’m sure you can imagine, this is one of the best calligraphy classes if you’re a fan of nib and fountain pens!

Hand Lettering and Beyond: Negative Space 3D Lettering with Watercolors

Hand Lettering and Beyond Negative Space 3D Lettering with Watercolors Skillshare

Teacher: Vinitha Mammen
Platform: Skillshare
Level: Beginner/intermediate

Duration: 17 Lessons (3h 26m)
Audio: English
Subtitles: Yes (CC)

This Skillshare course features engineer and self-taught artist Vinitha Mammen and is a fun option if you’re looking to experiment with mixed mediums! 

Teaching you all you need to know about how calligraphy comes into play with lettering, Vinitha will show you how to create dynamic wording by creating negative spaces with watercolors. You’ll learn how to apply 3D sketching techniques and angles to obtain unique results.

Read also: Best watercolor classes online

Like a few other calligraphy classes on the list, it also has handy downloadable worksheets to test out your skills. Vinitha will also cover FAQs around this theme and explain concepts such as negative spaces, faux calligraphy, how to control flat and dimensional brush strokes, and more.

Obviously, the main materials you’ll need here are watercolor paints. Check out some of the best watercolor sets, sketchbooks, and blocks to find one that suits your budget! Watercolor Paint Brush Calligraphy for Beginners on Domestika is also a great pick if this is an approach you want to pursue.

If you just want to stick with Skillshare for now, Vinitha has two more calligraphy classes on the platform, and both use watercolor as the primary medium. Get access to both with a Skillshare subscription or a free month-long trial!

Modern Pointed-Pen Calligraphy

Modern Pointed Pen Calligraphy

Teacher: Laura Lavender
Platform: Craftsy
Level: Beginner

Duration: 5 Lessons (2h+)
Audio: English
Subtitles: Yes (CC)

Last up on our lineup is a fantastic option for anyone looking to dive into classic calligraphy with a modern twist.

Taught by Laura Lavender on the creative learning platform Craftsy, Modern Pointed-Pen Calligraphy runs for over two hours and covers all you need to know about tackling calligraphy for the first time.

Your teacher will give you a brief introduction to hand-lettering with a few demonstrations, followed by listing and explaining all the tools required to jumpstart your projects, such as pens, nibs, paper, and more. Once that’s covered, you’ll dive into essential drills to familiarize yourself with your materials.

You’ll practice single strokes at first but eventually get into forming letters and words as your teacher guides you through the process. You’ll also learn about font styles and how to achieve minuscules and majuscules (capital and lowercase letters), as well as design numbers and variations.

This is the perfect class if you’re looking for calligraphy classes packed with drills and exercises to master the fundamentals of classic calligraphy for modern-day applications. It’s hosted on Craftsy, which means you can buy it individually or with a subscription.

For a limited time, you can get your first year of Craftsy Premium for just $2.49. Yes, a full year for less than a cup of coffee.


That’s it for our list of the best calligraphy classes you can take online. Which one will you be taking today? Share your experience in the comments below!

Join our newsletter for the latest guides, discounts, and more!

* indicates required


Comments

Leave a Reply