A Vocabulary Guide to Calligraphy in Spanish
La caligrafía, or calligraphy, is el arte de escribir bello (the art of writing beautifully), and it comes from the Greek word “kalligrafía.” It depends on the flow and rhythm of the pen, brush, or writing instrument.
Spanish calligraphy differs from English and Asian calligraphy since it also takes into consideration traits that characterize how a person or a group of people write.
If you are interested in calligraphy as a hobby, are a calligraphy lover, or are curious about this activity and how to talk about it in Spanish, then this blog post is for you!
Today you will learn all about calligraphy, the different types that exist, what materials you need, and some calligraphy words in Spanish.
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A Guide to Calligraphy in Spanish
From the moment all the different human civilizations developed a written language, calligraphy was born.
That means that the art of la caligrafía (calligraphy) has been practiced since thousands of years ago, and it is amazing that even with all the changes and evolution our ways of communication have gone through. This form of art has not only been preserved but also adapted.
Remember that calligraphy is different from writing. We use normal writing as an everyday activity, and we may have pretty handwriting, but calligraphy is the art of writing beautifully and it can be used to make logo designs, religious art, invitations, notes, and even announcements.
So, let’s learn about all the instruments you need to practice calligraphy in Spanish!
However, before that, let’s learn about the different types of calligraphy there are.
Types of Calligraphy (Tipos de caligrafía)
The first type of calligraphy ever found are Chinese characters. Experts date them from around the year 2650 BE and it is from this time that the fundamentals of calligraphy were stated.
The Chinese weren’t the only ones that practiced calligraphy, however. Thousands of years later, in the western world, calligraphy became a really popular activity, especially for those who had the privilege to learn how to write and read, and adapted their own writing systems to this form of art.
Types of Calligraphy in Spanish
|Arabic calligraphy||la caligrafía arabe|
|Chinese calligraphy||la caligrafía china|
|Gaelic calligraphy||la caligrafía gaélica|
|Georgian calligraphy||la caligrafía georgiana|
|Hebrew calligraphy||la caligrafía hebrea|
|Japanese calligraphy||la caligrafía japonesa|
|Korean calligraphy||la caligrafía coreana|
|Kufic calligraphy||la caligrafía cúfica|
|Western or Latin calligraphy||la caligrafía occidental o latina|
Materials for Calligraphy (Materiales para caligrafía)
While we can write with almost anything, calligraphy is made with really specialized tools.
The nib you choose, the handle, and even the ink and paper can really affect your final product, and for that reason, it is really important to know what kind of materials you may need if you want to practice calligraphy in a Spanish-speaking country!
Here is a small list of materials you need to practice calligraphy in Spanish!
Materials for Calligraphy in Spanish
|brush pen||la pluma de pincel|
|holder||el mango/ el canutero|
|oblique handle||el mango oblicuo|
|straight handle||el mango recto|
|tips||los casquillos/las plumillas|
Calligraphy Techniques (Técnicas de caligrafía)
Just as there are many materials you can use to practice calligraphy, there are also a lot of techniques to do it! It all depends on what kind of calligraphy you are practicing!
For example, if you do English or Spanish calligraphy, the technique you need is completely different from Arabic or Asian calligraphy.
Here are some basic, but technical, words for different elements of calligraphy techniques in Spanish. Check them out here!
Calligraphy Techniques in Spanish
|ascender line||la linea ascendente|
|base line||la linea base|
|cap line||la linea tope|
|cross bar||la barra transversal|
|downstroke||la pierna (de la letra)|
|nib width||el ancho de la plumilla|
|pen angle||el ángulo de la pluma|
|slant line||la linea inclinada|
|writing rhythm||el ritmo de la escritura|
If you are interested in learning more techniques in Spanish, check out this calligraphy tutorial in Spanish! And here is another video with 5 important tips for those who want to begin this artistic practice!
You can also check out this Faber-Castell post on the basics of calligraphy.
Differences Between Calligraphy, Lettering, and Typography
While all these techniques are different ways of giving life to what you write, they are not the same.
Calligraphy is done manually and using just one stroke when writing. The strokes for calligraphy are clear and precise and require patience, effort, and concentration to master.
Lettering is the art of “drawing” the letters. Yes, it sounds weird but that’s what it is! You plan, sketch, and then draw the letters. You can use several strokes, erase what you don’t like, and modify whatever you need. This is more an illustration technique than a writing one.
Now, typography is whatever characters, numbers, and symbols have been created exclusively to be used in a computer or in a technological device. Typography is really precise and uniform, the letters look all the same and that makes it perfect to use it in books, ads, texts, and even fonts for blog posts like this one! They are clear and easy to read.
Can I Use Calligraphy To Learn Spanish?
Short answer is: absolutely!
Calligraphy is an art that requires concentration and repetition to master. And because calligraphy needs the discipline to learn, the practice of this art will also help you to be able to have the discipline for other things, like learning Spanish.
You can use vocabulary words in Spanish to practice your calligraphy, and you will be able to not only get better with your strokes and writing, but also your mind will remember how a word in Spanish is pronounced, written and how it sounds.
I recommend you to check out our post on the Pomodoro Study Technique for your future calligraphy and Spanish studies.
Write Your Future!
Any new art or technique you want to master depends on how much effort you invest in them. Calligraphy is a beautiful art that can take time to master, and Spanish is the same. But that doesn’t mean it has to be boring, or that you will never see the benefits of learning something new.
Learning Spanish helps you to improve your cognition and decision-making abilities, something that can help you when you write and create art, especially using tools as delicate as ink and a quill. And, something we all like: having fluency in Spanish will help you to, not only to get better and cooler jobs, but also to earn more money.
So what are you waiting for? Sign up today for a free 1-to-1 class with a certified native Spanish-speaking teacher at Homeschool Spanish Academy and begin to build your knowledge! Check out our programs and take a peek at our affordable prices and begin this new adventure with us!
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