by the hand

handwriting has fascinated me for many years. i think even writing in my practice book as a kid was rewarding, although i do recall getting d’s in penmanship. i have a vivid image of my report card with c’s all across for my grade in penmanship. i have always written in an obscure hand. my sister is about the only on who can decipher it. in grad school, i had next guy, probably more than most. i spent hours in the type shop, but making individual letter forms did not speak to me. although i think part of my issue was with learning a new program. fontographer, to be specific. after a little thought, i decided on a typeface to design: my own script. this isn’t a big deal now, it’s actually rather mundane, self-indulgent. one classmates asked what i was going to call it. ‘mac-arrogant,’ i answered. seemed fitting. anyway, in my quest for letterheads, i have invariably come across some amazing samples of handwriting. i can never resist buying a letter with such a distinguished hand. here are several examples from my collection, each more remarkable than the next. when was the last time you wrote a letter by hand?

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  1. The second to last example is incredible, I can’t stop looking at it.

    At first glance I thought it was Hebrew or an South Asian language. Then realising it was English, I thought it was underlined with a ruler. But you can see from the breaks that it wasn’t, the lines form part of their flow.

    I can’t even begin to imagine what this person was like. Although I’d think they were aesthetically scrupulous and structured to OCD, but probably engaging and fascinating, and there is a clear warmth in what is written which contrasts so with the style.

    Comment by Misha — 29/04/2010 LINK TO THIS COMMENT

  2. The handwriting from the Department of the Platte in Nebraska is amazing. Even more so that it is so recent.

    How do you archive your collection?

    Comment by Likhit — 09/06/2010 LINK TO THIS COMMENT

  3. Wow. I’m totally mesmerized by the first scan. It looks like printed font. Handwriting is a lost art because everyone is just typing on computers now.

    Comment by Gene — 22/07/2010 LINK TO THIS COMMENT

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