Digital v. Paper: How to Find the Calligraphy Type that Fits Your Style

What is the difference between writing calligraphy on the iPad vs on paper?


Because I learned calligraphy with ink and paper, a couple years ago I would never have believed that an iPad and Apple pencil could measure up to the handwritten calligraphy. However, times have changed. With the right kind of brush, (see my recommendations below) it can get pretty close, and in my opinion, is great for digital prints and letterpress. Calligraphy on the iPad cuts out the time spent waiting for ink to dry as well as scanning them. Vectorizing is incredibly easy. And because it is portable you can work on the go without carrying around messy ink.


Putting ink to paper still creates an effect that digital tools still lack. Calligraphy on paper creates imperfections and subtle scratchy edges. And that is what makes each letter unique and special. It is a slower, longer process and can’t be rushed. I personally love calligraphy on paper. 


When choosing between digital calligraphy and traditional ink and paper, there really is no right or wrong choice. I consistently use both in many aspects of my work. If you want clean and modern, the iPad will be able to create beautiful writing with those crisp yet flowing lines. If you want something more organic and traditional, paper can create those natural imperfections and would be a great choice for you. 

Here are some iPad brushes I recommend and use myself. 

Saffron Avenue

Isidore and Augustine

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.