Artwork by Sheila Waters for her series of articles in Letter Arts Review magazineThe word calligraphy comes from the Greek kalli meaning beautiful and graphia referring to writing, and calligraphers today still emulate the beautiful letterforms of scribes throughout the centuries. Even in an age of computer-generated type, this ancient craft is flourishing, but it is also evolving. Calligraphy is now a respected visual art, the creative expression of the written word.

Calligraphy Classes in the Washington area

Lubna ZahidSheila Waters  FoundationalWCG members who teach calligraphy classes:
[Note to instructors: please send info]

  • In Washington, Smithsonian Associates offers 8-session daytime classes spring and fall. Call 202-357-3030.

  • Randall HassanIn Washington (and occasionally elsewhere), Michele Hatty Fritz of Meant To Be Calligraphy regularly teaches.

  • In Fairfax County at the Oak Marr Rec Center, Oakton VA, Gretchen Elson teaches Beginning Calligraphy starting Thurs, Sept 15, 10-12:30 for six weeks; and Italic Calligraphy beginning Nov 3. Gretchen will provide supplies if needed for both classes (pay by check). To register click here, then fill in Search Text: Calligraphy; Category: Fine Arts; Place: Oak Marr Rec Center; Instructor: Elson. (To register for the second class, put Italic in the search box.)

  • In Frederick, MD at Frederick Community College (FCC) Jodie Lide will teach Beginning Calligraphy: Italic on Fridays, 10-noon, August 19 - October 7, 2022 and Continuing Calligraphy
    October 21 - December 16. It will be listed in both the calalogs for the Lifelong Learning/Continuing Education and the Institute For Learning In Retirement (ILR). The ILR is for ages 55 and up and includes a slight discount! In both catalogs it usually appears under the Home and Hobbies section. Browse classes and register

  • Arabic Calligraphy Workshops by Scripts 'n' Scribes

  • Boston, MA: Calligraphy and manuscript courses in Boston and Hingham, MA taught by WCG member Maryanne Grebenstein of The Abbey Studio.

John Neal Bookseller has compiled a list of online calligraphy classes by some of the best teachers worldwide.


Julian Waters demo

Credits: "Calligraphy" and Foundational examples "n" and "u" by Sheila Waters. Initial R by Lubna Zahid. "If the doors" William Blake quotation lettered by Randall Hassan. Fox by Denis Brown and Annie Cicale (r). Blackletter class demo by Julian Waters. Below left: John Stevens; Denis Brown's detail of work on vellum, including raised and flat gilding, done when he was 20.

John StevensDenis Brown