How to Get Started with Hand Lettering (Free Printable Worksheets)

How to Get Started with Hand Lettering (Free Printable Worksheets)

Take your first steps into hand lettering with our useful printable worksheets

Hand lettering is a skill that anybody can learn, it is a fun and rewarding hobby that will impress your friends and family. All it takes is patience and practice, we have prepared these free printable hand lettering worksheets to help you get started practicing.

If you've been wanting to start hand lettering but don't know where to start, it can seem like a very daunting task. Especially if you have seen the beautiful, intricate lettering that others have created, it might seem overwhelming or impossible to reach that same level. 

The one thing that all of your favourite hand letterers have done which you haven't (yet) is practice. So the most important thing for you to do is to take that first step, and start drawing. Even if you don't like the results at first, everybody has to start somewhere.

What equipment do you need?

Hand lettering can be done very minimal equipment that most people already own, all you need is a pen and paper. As you improve your skills, you will inevitably start wanting to buy more and more pens, pencils and paper to enhance your experience. I recommend not worrying too much about this stuff in the beginning. 

If you have a biro or pencil and some printer paper handy, that's enough to get started. But if you're serious about hand lettering I recommend also picking up a Mechanical pencil and a set of Micron pens, you can't go wrong with these. By the time you need more equipment, you'll know exactly what it is and why you need it.

Inspiration 

Before you get started writing, you might want to look around for some inspiration and and get some ideas. This is a great way to learn, and you don't need to reinvent the wheel. It is okay to try to emulate the handwriting styles you see as beginner. Of course as you become more advanced you will develop your own unique style. 

Pinterest

Pinterest is an excellent source for inspiration. As a community based website you will find ideas and inspiration from a huge range of sources all in one place.

Instagram

If you have an Instagram account, you can follow hashtags such as #handlettering for a constant feed of inspiration.

Behance

Behance is an online portfolio website, designers upload their own work and often include very detailed descriptions of what into their projects with lots of images. You can start by searching for hand lettering.

Practice, practice, practice 

When you have your pen and paper, clear your workspace sit upright in a comfortable position. Hold your pen between your thumb and pointer finger with it resting on your middle finger, and start sketching. Practice writing out your ABC's first. Repeat any letters which you want to try again, it doesn't matter if you fill a whole page with A's for example.

After you have practiced your ABCs, it can be useful to start moving on to full sentences. If you don't know what to write, just think of some quotes from your favourite movies, lyrics from your favourite songs or write a love note to somebody.

Download Free Hand Lettering Practice Sheets

Use these printable PDF templates to practice your hand lettering skills. Simply download the package, choose the template that you want and print off as many copies as you need. these templates are supplied in both A4 and US Letter dimensions.

Includes 4 templates for you to choose from:


Basic Grid
This is a bare-bones template with baseline, cap-height and x-height lines. Suitable for more experienced hand-letterers to practice writing ABCs or full sentences.

Slanted Guides
This template features the basic grid, and also has slanted guides at a 20º angle for practicing italic letterforms. Suitable for writing ABCs or full sentences.

Tracing Template
This template is for beginners and intermediates, it includes sample letterforms for you to practice tracing over. Features uppercase and lowercase cursive ABCs.

Tracing Template with tips
This template is the same as the tracing template, but also includes arrow tips to help beginners trace over them. The arrows tell you where to start and which direction to go. The arrows are also numbered if more than stroke is needed to complete the letter.

Free Download

Step 1: Practice Tracing

Begin by printing out a few copies of the Tracing Template with tips PDF and practice tracing the A-Z letterforms. Use the arrow tips for advice on where to start and which direction your stroke should go. After a few attempts, you should be confident enough to move on to the Tracing Template without tips.

Step 2: Emulate your favourite handwriting

Using the inspiration sources earlier in this article, find some examples of hand lettering you would like to try and emulate. Choose something simple to begin with, and print off a few copies of the Basic Grid or Slanted Guides templates depending on whether your chosen inspiration is italicized or not.

Step 3: Freehand

Once you have mastered tracing the template and emulating your chosen inspiration. It is time to break free from the templates and try out your own unique style. Use a blank sheet of paper and sketch out your ideas lightly with pencil first, and then use pen to trace and finish off your designs.

More Resources  

This is only the beginning of your journey into hand lettering. Here are some more in depth resources that you may find useful:

Calligraphy.org


Skill Share


Hand Lettering for beginners


Hello Brio


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