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Embrace the Seasons: Using Seasonal Doodles for Calligraphy Practice

Combine the aesthetics of calligraphy with simple drawings using the pressure and release technique.

Practicing calligraphy is essential, but thinking of what to write can often draw a blank! How about incorporating seasonal doodles into your calligraphy practice? This can add a delightful touch to your work and will still build up your pen control and muscle memory (the ability to reproduce a particular movement without conscious thought, acquired as a result of frequent repetition of that movement.)

In this blog, I will show you how we went about creating the seasonal doodles template that was sent to our newsletter subscribers this October. It's a fun and such a simple way to keep inspired.

Using Doodles to Practice Calligraphy
Calligraphy Practice Idea

Seasonal doodles that capture the essence of each season, from the delicate blossoms of spring to the cozy mittens of winter can become part of you way getting to grips with calligraphy. Incorporating these seasonal elements into your calligraphy practice might seem odd as they aren't letters, but keep reading!

Modern calligraphy relies on the thick and thin strokes of the pen giving different thicknesses of line. If you are using a pointed nib, brush pen or paint brush, this is achieved but pressing down more firmly when you are drawing a stroke that is coming downwards (towards your body) and lighter for those strokes that go upwards. Being able to do this change of pressure without thinking about it allows you to concentrate on designing your calligraphy, so practice needs to build this automatic response.

Tip #1 - Apply pressure and release as you create your doodles

Pencil some doodles out first, then as you work over them with your calligraphy pen or brush, press down to make a thicker downstroke, and go lightly when you move the pen up the page. This is how calligraphy is done and so even if what you're creating is a pattern or picture, by making them in this way you continue to build up your muscle memory.

Tip #2 - Keep it Simple for Practice Drills

Keep your drawings simple, your focus is on controlling the pressure of the pen or brush, so don't make it difficult by creating very detailed designs. Embrace the seasons, let your creativity flow, and watch your calligraphy projects bloom like the flowers in spring, shine like the summer sun, rustle like autumn leaves, and glisten like winter snowflakes.

Tip #3 - Collect Inspiration

Pinterest, Instagram, and nature walks can be excellent sources of inspiration. Begin a sketch book of seasonal doodles, practice different styles, shapes, and sizes until you find a style you enjoy doing. Integrate calligraphy to create seasonally themed greeting cards, invitations, or even wall art.

Tip #4 - Experiment with Colours

Use seasonally appropriate colours to enhance the overall theme. Coloured inks, metallic paints, or gouache can be used with a nib or paint brush. If you're using brush pens, pick a few shades that work together and blend them in your work.

Tip #5 - Trace your Ideas

So that you can re-use a doodle that you really like, trace it by using a light-pad. They come in different sizes and are such a useful tool as they shine light up through the paper, allowing you to see what is under the sheet you're working on to use it as a guide. Digital tools can help you practice calligraphy, so if you have an IPad Pro, an Apple Pencil and Procreate App you can trace drawings by applying layers.

Download the Autumn Template for your own Calligraphy Practice

This doodle design is one of the monthly templates that we send the our subscribers. If you weren't subscribed then you can click here to download your own copy and do share what you create on social (credit us please!).

If you would like more ideas and motivation, then please do subscribe to our monthly newsletter at the bottom of the page.

Happy Doodling!


Maisie Minett


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