Wednesday, 16 January 2013

More About The Roman Alphabet

The Roman calligraphy style appeared in Western culture about over 2000 year ago.  The Roman style can be found in ancient inscribed carved stone, which was the start of the development of the basic foundation style of the Roman alphabet.
The Romans may have got their alphabet from the Greeks.  The Romans spread the Roman alphabet across the empire, which is how it first came to Britain and other parts of the world, such as America etc.  Originally, the Roman alphabet only had 23 letters, which excluded J, U and W and they were all capital letters.

 
A simple calligraphy project
Roman Capital Letters

The Roman capitals are characterised by circular letterforms, long, straight lines and elegant shapes and proportions.  The Roman calligraphy style forms a great start to the understanding of the basic rules of letter proportions and writing calligraphy. 

Skeleton Letterforms

You can practice writing Roman styles by using a simple pen or Biro.  You simply write the letterforms first, using a faint ruled piece of paper and a pen.  Copy the letterforms carefully until you get the style right.  A good trick to learning how to write Roman calligraphy is to use some tracing paper or layout paper and overlay it onto a Roman alphabet template.  You can find templates printouts quite easily, either from a good art store or you can print one off from the Internet.  Simply overlay the layout paper on top of the template and study the letterforms.  Using a pen, trace the outlines of the letterforms carefully until you get the feel of writing this style.  If you can draw the Roman alphabet in calligraphy, you can draw anything.

Letter Spaces And The Roman Alphabet

You will notice that the spaces between letters of the Roman alphabet will differ depending on the letter written.  Circular letters, such as ‘o’ or ‘e’ tend to have smaller spaces between them than straight letters, such as ‘h’ or ‘l’.  At first, you may find it tricky to get the spaces between the letters right, but with time and practice, you will get the hang of it.

Roman Letters - Wikimedia Commons
Calligraphy Pens And Roman Calligraphy

Writing the Roman alphabet can be quite easy and versatile when it comes to choosing a calligraphy pen.  You can write this alphabet using a simple Biro or everyday pen, or writing with a broad nibbed calligraphy pen.  The broader the nib, the bigger the letters will be.  This style can be used for wedding invitations or writing a certificate.