Writing with a fountain pen is a different experience from writing with ballpoint pens or rollerballs. While the latter can write well regardless of their angle or positioning, fountain pens require a different touch.
Learning how to write with a fountain pen requires a few extra steps, but this is what makes the process more enjoyable! You’ll master many things, including how to hold a fountain pen properly to find the best angle for writing comfortably. All of this comes together to make your fountain pen writing experience a better one.
Here’s how you can start writing with a fountain pen:
Choosing the right pen
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Choosing the right pen is the first step in learning how to properly write with one. Of course, you can always just choose from reliable brands like Faber-Castell. How you select a fountain pen, however, depends on many variables. Some of them include the following:
Hand size. The size of your hands will influence what type of pen you purchase. Those with smaller hands may feel more comfortable writing with a fountain pen that isn’t too long. On the other hand, writers with larger hands might prefer heavier and bigger pens.
What you are writing. The right fountain pen will also depend on the content that you are writing. Characters may require more fine-nibbed pens than romanized letters. Perhaps you may be using your pen for sketching or stylized calligraphy.
Size of your handwriting. The size of your handwriting will dictate what type of nib you should use. Those who write in bigger fonts may benefit more from broader nibs, while people who write small will find it easier to use finer nibs.
How fast you write. The speed of your writing also matters. Fast writers who like to jot down notes will appreciate lightweight pens that have a wetter nib for little to no interruptions, like the Platinum Preppy fountain pen. People who write at slower speeds often do so more deliberately, so pens with more heft like the LAMY 2000 Fountain Pen may be more suited to their writing style.
Holding a fountain pen
Once you’ve made your choice, it’s time to learn how to hold a fountain pen. First, figure out whether you prefer to have the cap posted or not. People have different preferences, but those with smaller hands may prefer to leave the cap off the back of the pen.
The best way to control your fountain pen is by holding it between your thumb and index finger. The barrel should be resting near the tip of your middle finger (by the last knuckle). The rest of your hand should rest gently on the writing surface to keep balance. Rather than holding the pen vertically, it should be inclined at about a 40 to 55-degree angle with your paper to encourage good ink flow.
Mastering the writing movement
Now that you’re comfortable with holding your pen, you can master the last step: the writing movement. Most people write with their fingers and wrists. However, this can result in fatigue and cramps, especially during long periods of writing.
Practice engaging your lower arm muscles when you write. Since this muscle group is bigger, it won’t get tired as quickly as your hand muscles do. Shifting the focus onto your lower arm also allows you to maintain your pen’s posture so that the fountain pen nib remains positioned at the right angle. When writing with a fountain pen, remember not to press down too hard; let your pen glide across the paper using your arm.
The Bottom Line
Learning how to write with fountain pens can take some time and a little bit of adjustment, but it’s well worth the effort. Whether you are writing more expressive pieces, for fun, or just jotting down your everyday notes, finally feeling comfortable with this writing instrument feels like a great accomplishment.
Written by EndlessPens Blogger Ramona Kabigting