I took my first calligraphy class last fall -- Italic Handwriting -- after joining the local Calligraphy Guild (as a total amateur). I met some incredibly talented artists, and even better, some very cool people. The handwriting class was fantastic but challenging. I do not have the most consistent hand, so a great amount of focus (more than I am capable of really) was required. And I am a lefty, so just figuring how to hold the pen was a battle in itself... But I love a good challenge and I'll keep up with it.
This spring (or early summer, if you are going by the weather here) I took a Copperplate class. This is a different pen altogether -- a pointed pen in an oblique holder, rather than a broad edge nib in a fountain pen. So it was a whole ball game, figuring out how to hold this pen (only lefty in the class!), figuring out to get the right amount of ink to come out, how to control the thickness of the stroke. But with all these challenges I look forward to continuing to practice -- I have much to learn and hope to have some beautiful things to show you here!
Below are a couple of bits from my Copperplate class:
(the "love" design at the bottom was modeled after an example from my instructor; the monogram KAB was my own design; the rest is mean learning how to write!)