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MDPNet

People Hi,

New to 'the things' here but I thought I'd ask if anyone has information on flourishes and ligatures, specifically how to connect them. I know that calligraphy is all about beautiful handwriting, but there's surprisingly little information on flourishes. To be clear, I know the basics; thin over thick (preferred), don't shove things to close to each other, etc ... but what I don't understand is 'how'.

How does one know which way a flourish should start, which direction it should end up, etc? Attached is a sample of what I'd like to accomplish ... but what I don't understand is if there are books/links out there that discuss this very thing.

I've had a few friends say that the only way to learn this stuff is by copying other people's stuff, which I get but ... that is massively unhelpful to me. There's gotta be more to this than that ... right?

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Ralf Herrmann

It’s usually a contextual thing based on the specific words, so there aren’t any hard rules. 

I would guess it comes naturally with more practise. For inspiration and as a model for practising, maybe browse the old penmanship books available for free on The Archive? For example: https://archive.org/details/PortfolioOfOrnatePenmanship

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MDPNet

Thanks for the response Ralf ...

Yeah, your response is basically what a couple of my (lettering) friends have told me ... practice and references (which is extremely and maddeningly vague -.-). In any case, the book you gave does have one or two styles that show some interconnecting letter-forms, which is more than most books out there, so thank you for that!

I've also been tracking another resource that mentioned Paul Luhtein's Laisulega Kirjutatud Alfabeete. There's some neat stuff in there, but not much on flourishes or ligature. The only problem with the book is that its not in English or translatable, so I have no idea what it says. Good exemplar models though.

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