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Trying out calligraphy

For about a month or so now, I've been obsessing on calligraphy posts that Instagram has been referring to me. I have no idea how Instagram managed to figure out my yet-to-be-awakened interest on typography and longhand, but it did, thanks to the "People You May Like" page. It led me to a couple of local and international artists very much into the craft of calligraphy, and before I knew it, half of my feed was filled with fancy scribbles. (The other half being puppies. Heehee.)

Unknown to a lot of people, I am a stress-doodler. When I am most anxious or frustrated, I doodle a lot - quotes, lyrics, even shapes. Sometimes I just scribble swirls and random patterns. You can tell it's almost exam week when the corners of my notebooks and reviewers suddenly have Incubus lyrics on them. I enjoy the physical act of writing. I hoard pens of all colors and brands; I have stocks of notebooks and pad papers of all sizes. Yes, I love all kinds of writing. (This is probably why a high school classmate of mine, who once became a seatmate, thought "Creative Writing" was equivalent to "Creative Lettering and Fancy Handwriting." HA HA HAHAHA #truestory)

Which is why I kept asking myself the last few weeks, "Why haven't I tried calligraphy?" I have no idea why I never considered it before. It makes sense to have it as a hobby, given the amount of doodling I do. Maybe it's just that I never really saw people I knew doing it. It wasn't so accessible an idea to me. Until now.

A few weeks ago, I bought myself two calligraphy markers from National Bookstore and spent an entire night - guiltlessly - just writing down the choruses to Taylor Swift's new singles. And just over the weekend, my good friend Jio bought for me actual calligraphy supplies: two nibs, two pen holders (one straight and one oblique), and a small jar of ink.

And now, here I am, trying (and failing!) to make elegant scribbles in longhand. I guess I'm pretty lucky my cursive is quite decent, thanks to the Paulinian handwriting the nuns forced us to learn in grade school. It's actually overwhelming! Holding the pen takes a lot getting used to. So far, I'm still committing a lot of rookie mistakes. (Please forgive some messy letters in the picture above!) But it's great fun. It's relaxing, in the same way my regular, ordinary doodling makes me feel, but it's also challenging, which is always a good feeling to have. It's a nice distraction from the rigidity of law school.

A really, really fancy distraction.