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The Zapf    
Scholarship Fund

As mentors to our Guild, Hermann Zapf and his wife Gudrun Zapf von Hesse endowed an annual scholarship for students to learn our beloved art. Because of his generosity of spirit and funds, the Hermann Zapf Scholarship Fund is still active and has enabled many to continue their pursuit of calligraphy. 

In 1988, at the first Letterforum Conference, Professor Hermann Zapf endowed a scholarship fund, the Hermann Zapf Education Fund (HZEF), for those who have been members of the Washington Calligraphers Guild for at least one year. 

The scholarships are offered annually through the generosity of the late Professor Hermann Zapf and Gudrun Zapf von Hesse. Designed to assist promising students of calligraphy and its related arts with ongoing expenses to further their study of the historical hands using the broad-edged pen, the grants can be used for workshops, classes, books, supplies, conference fees, private studies, etc.

The awarded amount of money does not exceed $1,000 per session, and more than one recipient may be selected each time. A panel of three judges reviews applications (blind entries) and selects the successful candidates for a main award and possibly smaller awards.

Guidelines & Application

Send your application along with 3-5 samples of your artwork showing Foundational, Italic, and Roman hands (JPGs or photocopies in color or black/white) no later than
February 26, 2024.

Please read the Application Guidelines carefully before applying.
Questions about eligibility and areas of study should be directed to Shane Perry.


Past Winners >

Hermann Zapf donated the above piece to our 20th Anniversary Exhibit. Our website uses fonts designed by Zapf: Optima for text and Zapfino headlines.

The recipient of the Fall 2022 Zapf Scholarship is Rajan Kumar Singh (better known as Dashaen) from New Delhi. An extremely promising young calligrapher, Dashaen will use his full award to continue his studies with top online instructors.

The recipient of the 2020 Zapf Scholarship Award was Kacie-Linn Engle. She used the funds to attend two WCG workshops, one with Carol DuBosch and the other with Gemma Black.

The recipient of the 2019 Zapf Scholarship was long-time WCG member Nereidin Feliciano. Nereidin planned to use the funds to study with John Stevens at the Chicago Calligraphy Collective’s Annual Retreat in Spring 2019.

Marilyn Davis was chosen as the recipient of the 2018 Zapf Scholarship Award. Marilyn will use the funds to study Foundational with Marta Legeckis in the fall. She plans on using her newly honed skills to conduct a calligraphic project with the elderly in her community. This is a wonderful way to reach out to the public and acquaint them with the world of calligraphy.

Ethan Cohen was chosen as the recipient of the 2017 Zapf Scholarship Award. Ethan has earmarked the money to help with tuition for his final semester of the Type@Cooper Extended Program at the Cooper Union.

The 2016 recipient was Nereidin Feliciano, who used her grant to take a Master Class with Sheila Waters.

The 2015 recipient, Elizabeth (Lily) Blinn, used her scholarship money to study with John Stevens at Cheerio. [Read her report here.]

WCG awarded the Fall/ Winter 2011 Scholarship to three members: Diane (Holly) Gibbons received $500 to study with Sheila Waters and attend Guild workshops; Derrick Tabor, $300 for continued studies with Sheila Waters as well as studying the works of Hermann Zapf; and Felecia McFail, $200 to study pointed pen with Pat Blair.

WCG members Patricia Stinneford (Germantown, MD) and Robert Howe (Stanmore, NSW, Australia) were selected by a panel of judges to receive Zapf Scholarship Awards in the Fall/Winter 2010 competition. Patricia will use her funds to study in WCG workshops, and Robert will attend a workshop taught by Carl Rohrs.

The 2008 scholarship recipient, Shane Perry, used his grant to continue his studies with Sheila Waters and attend selected WCG workshops.

Claire Lohrmann, who was awarded a partial scholarship for the Spring/Summer 2007 session, furthered her studies in local classes and workshops.

La Verne Magarian was the recipient of the Spring/Summer 2005 scholarship and used her award funds to attend Letterforum 2006. Ruth Schellbach, who was awarded a partial scholarship in the Fall/Winter 2005 session, also used her funds to attend Letterforum 2006.

The 2003 winner was Lucinda Fitch Huttlinger, who used her scholarship to continue her studies in Blackletter with Sheila Waters and Versals with Ann Pope.

The 2001 scholarship winner, Cindy Yount, also used her award to continue her studies with Sheila Waters.

The 2000 scholarship went to Sister Delphine Vasquez, CHM, who used it to continue studies with Ann Pope.

The Fund's 1999 grant was used to introduce children to calligraphy. Susan Easton taught the first Guild-sponsored calligraphy class for children at Carole Highlands Elementary School in Takoma Park, MD. The class introduced young artists who have completed 5th or 6th grade to the principles of calligraphy as they learned to write the Foundational hand. They completed a series of exercises and projects to learn the structure and character of Foundational letters, and used a variety of broad-nib pens and calligraphy paper to become acquainted with materials used by calligraphers. The class compiled a collection of favorite words, poetry, quotations and alphabet sentences to inspire their creation of beautiful and expressive letters.

Theresa Daly used the 1998 scholarship to attend the international conference, Discoveries, in San Diego, and 1999's winner, Davette Leonard Kvarnes, used the funds to study with Sheila Waters.

In 1997 Lee Ann Novak and Stephen Rapp shared the scholarship to study with Michael Clark. Marie Lenker used her 1996 scholarship for classes with Sheila Waters. 1995 recipient Rebecca Lepkowski attended the 1996 Letterforum Conference.

Other past Zapf scholarship winners have included Rose Folsom, who used the grant to create over 20 hand-made artists books, some of which are now part of permanent collections in prestigious national libraries.

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