Photo by Contributor Joy Fairclough

Here you'll find links to:

Downloadable letter specimens
Downloadable line guide paper
Books of exemplars

 

Downloadable Letter Specimen & Exemplar Sheets

Archive.org — Highly recommended
An incredible website cataloging scans of vintage books and leaflets, including a huge number of calligraphy and type specimens; just search for "calligraphy" and "hand lettering"

The Book of Kells
High resolution scans of every page

Brush Letter Practice Guide
Free and paid brush lettering practice sheets and notepads

Digital Bodleian
High resolution scans of old manuscripts from around the world

IAMPETH — Highly recommended
This collection contains dozens of digitized, rare books on calligraphy, penmanship, and flourishing

IAMPETH on Archive.org — Highly recommended
This is such a brilliant, extensive archive of vintage calligraphy books that it deserves its own entry.

Manuscriptorium
Free digital library of old manuscripts

Speedball Letter Specimen Book — Highly recommended
All the amazing pages of this historic book scanned and available to view in high resolution

The Penman's Repository
High resolution scans of this 18th-century book on Copperplate, Old English, flourishes, and German text.

Postman's Knock — Highly recommended
A blog maintained by Lindsey Bugbee with, among other things, a variety of calligraphy practice sheets

A Tutor to Penmanship
High resolution scans of this 17th-century book on script and flourishes

Vintage Lettering Scans on Flickr
Inspiring vintage type compiled by Flickr user Patricia M.


Downloadable Guideline Paper

Circular Line Guides
Free downloads by Steve Husting

Dawn Nicole Lettering Practice Sheets
Free downloads in an assortment of styles

Diagonal Practice Guides
Free downloads by The Fozzy Book

Ductus
A fabulous, customizable generator maintained by Josselin Cuette

Graph Paper Generator
Free tool for creating custom gridded paper; downloadable in PDF format

IAMPETH Lettering Guide Sheets — Highly recommended
Free downloads provided by IAMPETH

Scribblers Guide Paper Generator
Enter ascender, body, and descender heights, then download the generated template


Books of Specimens

There are even more books in our Books & Magazines gallery!

The Art of Calligraphy
Full PDF version of David Harris's book The Art of Calligraphy; 128 full-color pages, many of which contain letter specimens

Speedball Textbook
A very important classic with alphabets and examples by leading calligraphers. 

The Zanerian Manual of Alphabets and Engrossing
The first 21 pages by E.A. Lupfer provide some of the best Copperplate instruction available. Other engrossing alphabets are shown, as well as many examples of engrossed pieces.


 

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