I wrote a letter yesterday to a friend of mine. He and I write each other about once a week, sometimes more often, which works out to 50 or 60 letters a year, and we’ve been at it for four years. It’s an unusual and old fashioned epistulary friendship, as we’ve only seen each other in person maybe a dozen times. I use Japanese rice paper, which comes in handy 60-foot rolls and is quite beautiful. A letter is wonderful thing — the recipient knows that the writer spent (in this case) several hours thinking just about him. I like to illustrate my letters with pictures of creatures Kieran and I have discovered. For that I use colored pencils.
I finished the letter late last night. As a father, I have to tolerate water pistols and stormtroopers on my desk!
The letter was still there in the morning, ready to be put in an envelope and mailed.
A C-3 or C-4 nib is good for envelope addresses.
Carefully dipping the pen.
Writing the first letter of the address.
Some people measure and draw faint pencil lines to get things straight, but I just eyeball it.
I learned calligraphy from Alfred Fairbank’s 1932 book, A Handwriting Manual.
I leave the crossing of the Ts until the words are done.
Ts can be crossed with a flourish.
Again, I just eyeball the angles and position of the second line. I don’t get out my protractor.
I like larger initial capitals.
The double F in “Office” gives a chance for a fun flourish.