Pen and Nib Tutorial

Several of you who have ordered our Calligraphy Kits have reached out with questions about how to hold your pens. I set up a quick tutorial on how to do just that, along with a few images and explanations on possible problems that may occur.

Let's get started! When holding your pen, the nib should be on the left side of the pen staff. Dip nib into the ink just past the small "hole" in the nib. When putting pen to paper, make sure your pen is at a slight angle (not straight up and down). As you do your strokes, put a little more pressure on the down strokes and lighten up on the up strokes. This will help you achieve the "thick/thin" that you're looking for. See video below... 

If your nib is splitting like the picture below, then try this:

  • you may not have enough ink, so dip again
  • adjust the angle of the pen so your nib sits more at an angle on the paper
  • you may be pressing too hard, so lighten the grip just a tad
pen split.jpg

Other issues that may come up:

  • ink splatters: pressing too hard, too much ink, and/or adjust angle of the pen
  • pen keeps "catching" on the paper: adjust the angle of the pen... you may have it too upright

And last but not least, cleaning the pen. I just use a wet paper towel, and gently wipe the nib off. It's OK if it's not 100% clean. You can keep the nib in the pen, and just let it air dry. 


Don't over-think it... just have fun. Happy practicing!