This simple method for creating faux (or fake) calligraphy is perfect for creating beautiful hand lettered artwork without special tools or extensive training and practice! Follow along for my faux calligraphy tutorial.
My love of calligraphy and hand lettering started back in Junior High when I would spend all my free time in class writing and decorating notes to pass to my friends in between classes. I remember getting a how-to lettering book at the time and learning the basics of the faux calligraphy technique I’m going to share with you today.
This simple technique allows you to get the look of calligraphy easily without special tools or tons of practice. The signature thick and thin look of traditional calligraphy or brush lettering is created by using calligraphy pens or brushes/brush pens that allow thickness of the stroke to vary by changing the angle or pressure.
But you don’t need to worry about fancy pens or pressure or any of that for this faux calligraphy! Ready to get started?
Faux calligraphy tutorial supplies:
- Spiral Bound Studio 71 Drawing Pad
- Studio 71 Watercolor Paper Pad
- Studio 71 Drawing Pencil Set
- Colored Fine Line Studio 71 Drawing Pens
- Studio 71 Artist Watercolor Pencils
- Studio 71 Round Brush
- Dual-Tip Studio 71 Permanent Markers
Step One. Draw Your Word or Phrase.
First, start off by drawing your word or phrase. Try to draw your lettering slightly wider leaving some space between the letters and in the loops of your letters.
This is the step where you may need to do some practice, especially if you are new to lettering. Spend some time practicing letters, loops, and shapes. It can be useful to look at examples of lettering you like as you practice forming your letter shapes.
Step Two. Add Lines to Thicken Downstrokes.
Once you have drawn your word, it’s time to create the illusion of thick downstrokes. To do this, draw lines to one side of each part of the letter where you moved your pen downward as you drew. To get a more consistent, even look, keep your downstroke lines on the same side of the original line.
Step Three. Fill in Downstrokes.
Finally, the last step is to fill in the downstrokes. You can color them in with the same pen you used to draw the lettering or try using different colors or even fill the downstrokes in with a pattern!
Optional Step Four. Try Out Different Mediums.
You can try this same basic faux calligraphy technique out with all different kinds of pens, markers, and drawing tools. I was able to easily create a watercolor brush lettering look by creating my lettering with a watercolor pencil and then painting over that with water and a small round brush.
And that’s it for this simple faux calligraphy tutorial! Press play below for my quick video tutorial.
Will you be giving this technique a try?
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Alexis Middleton is a lifelong crafter/DIYer and blogger at Persia Lou. She started crafting at a young age. As a girl, she spent summers with her grandmother crocheting baby doll afghans, making coasters out of plastic canvas and yarn, and canning apricot jam. Today, Alexis spends a lot of time dreaming up and working on projects for her family’s home. She loves mixing traditional crafting techniques with a more modern aesthetic.