Your pen


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You can write beautiful italic with a pencil. A ballpoint pen or a fibertip will do fine. But you really need an edged pen to take proper advantage of Arrighi‘s teaching. (If you already know how to handle a broad-edge pen, skip this page.)
    Pen angle matters. Forty-five degrees are a safe choice. Here are three examples. The paths are the same, but the shapes are different.

A 30-degree pen angle makes thick horizontal strokes and thin verticals.

A 45-degree angle makes horizontal and vertical strokes of equal thickness.

A 60-degree angle makes thin horizontal strokes and thick verticals.

Your horizontal and vertical strokes should be about the same thickness. Writing a plus sign is the easiest way of making sure they are. You may want to use a steeper angle for some letters, such as the N and the z.
   Left-handed writers can get special pens with the nib cut at an oblique angle. Some prefer to turn the paper.



Copyright © 2002 Gunnlaugur SE Briem. All rights reserved. Updated 01 May 2003