My Intro to Calligraphy.
I started looking into calligraphy because I wanted to address my own wedding invitations. The problem was, was that 1) I only started looking into it a couple of weeks before I scheduled to send my invitations out, and 2) I have naturally horrific penmanship. In a short amount of time, I had my work cut out for me and I researched far and wide for the best introductory books I could find. The first book I got was Calligraphy Made Easy by Ashley Gardner. Barnes & Noble had them for sale in-store for $9.98. It's even cheaper on line, now.
Step 1: get a regular pen or pencil, and do not underestimate the importance of going through the "warm up drills" and exercises with your pen or pencil. I promise. This will help you learn how to angle your pen/pencil correctly, and it will train your hand muscles to know how it "feels" to make a downstroke thicker, and how to make your upstrokes thin.
Step #2: get the right brush pens/calligraphy pens. I've tried several and I'm going to save you from doing your own trial and error with pens. The best I've used and still continue to use are the Tombow Fudenosuke Brush Pens from Amazon. I bought the 4-peice. They were only $12.
Step 3: I wanted to "decorate" my calligraphy with simple, clean botanical drawings. So I found a book on Amazon on Botanical Line Drawing. They look easy, but they aren't---especially for someone like me who is not a natural artist. If I can't write beautifully, I certainly can't draw beautifully. So my botanical drawings are still a work in progress. I'll update all of you as my drawings improve.
Here are some of the calligraphy and botanical drawings I've been working on lately.
WARNING: they're not as pretty as I would like, but I ask for grace---I'm really not great at this. As I start investing into better paper and more high-end equipment later on, I'm sure my calligraphy will see a vast improvement.