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Best Overall: CreativeLive
CreativeLive has plenty of desirable features that make it a great place to learn online calligraphy.
The site has roughly 13 lettering courses and 135 separate lessons to browse. Each course preview shows student reviews and how many people have enrolled in the class. What makes CreativeLive so appealing is that you can see how many people recommended the course, and there is also a section that displays student work.
After you take the course, you'll have the option to upload your projects and become part of this online community. The platform is ideal for all skill levels and budgets because there are subscription, a la carte, and free course options.
Check out one of the free online calligraphy lessons first if you want to get a feel for how the site works. If you like it, check out the basic brush strokes lesson (for about $17) to get started.
Best Budget: Skillshare
If you are looking to take several calligraphy courses but don't want to spend hundreds of dollars on each, consider Skillshare as a budget-friendly option.
The online calligraphy courses from Skillshare are popular and well-executed. For instance, this hand lettering course for beginners has had more than 30,000 students enroll. On Skillshare, you can see how many students took a class, read unbiased reviews, and watch a video introduction that explains the coursework.
Skillshare is budget-friendly because it offers free, premium, and team memberships at a low monthly cost. Each course may not have the same depth as some of the a la carte versions, but there is enough material to get you started with your hand lettering practice.
Be sure to read reviews before selecting a lesson, and we also recommend reading some of the comments in the Discussion section. Here, you can see where people had trouble with the course and find out particular questions students had while they were learning.
Best for Variety: Udemy
Udemy is an online platform that hosts thousands of classes on a variety of subjects. This website is ideal if you want to compare several online calligraphy courses before choosing. There are several dozen classes that range in price from roughly $20 to $200.
When scanning the site, you will see a carousel of the most popular calligraphy classes at the top. More importantly, each class has honest and unfiltered user reviews. You can also see how many students have enrolled in a class, which can give you an idea of the lesson's success. You can preview the class with a trailer, as well as different modules within it.
The courses on Udemy cover the broadest range of techniques and skill levels, which is why we chose it for Best Variety. You can select from offerings like Arabic Calligraphy, Modern Calligraphy, and Hand Lettering for Beginners.
There is a subscription plan for business accounts, but otherwise, each course is sold on an a la carte basis. If you enjoy one class, you can check out the instructor's bio and see their other offerings.
Best for Beginners: The Postman's Knock
You may have already stumbled across Lindsey Bugbee's work on Instagram or Pinterest if you're familiar with the world of online lettering. Her site, The Postman's Knock, has produced one of the best online calligraphy courses for beginners.
Instead of indirectly supporting instructors through larger platforms, you can support Bugbee directly by purchasing her course for about $25 on her website. She has included several student reviews on the site and a thorough breakdown of what you can expect.
The six well-developed lessons featured are perfect for beginners who don't know where to start and can't take an in-person workshop. Each lesson comes with homework and a short quiz, all in the service of helping the knowledge and skills stick.
Bugbee also includes a printable workbook that will help you expand your skills throughout the course. If you want a real in-class experience, The Postman's Knock is a standout.
Best for Gifting: Laura Hooper Calligraphy
Are you hoping to support another small business and artist? So many people love the online calligraphy courses offered by Laura Hooper Calligraphy. She does a great job of combining necessary coursework with all the supplies you need, which helps take the guesswork out of it.
Not sure which pen and ink to use? Purchase her beginner calligraphy kit for around $140 that comes with essential supplies and an online course. She even has a calligraphy kit that is specifically designed for kids. Choose from courses like How to Write in a Straight Line or How to Create Wood Signage for about $45.
Laura Hooper Calligraphy classes make wonderful gifts. It's easy enough to print out a gift certificate to redeem an online course. However, it's much more helpful to give your loved one a complete calligraphy kit with everything they need to get started.
While there aren't online reviews on this site, you can head to Hooper's Instagram to explore the credibility of her business.
Best for Digital Hand-Lettering: Amanda Arneill
Modern calligraphy comes in two forms: hand-lettering and digital hand-lettering. Hand-lettering is what it sounds like, forming fonts by hand. Once you have the basics of calligraphy down, you can start experimenting with digital hand-lettering using an iPad or other tablet.
If you're looking for a course to teach you how to better navigate digital hand-lettering, check out the offerings from Amanda Arneill. She teaches students how to use Procreate and how to use an iPad for lettering. The classes on her site are broken down by skill level, and each class is split up into several modules.
These calligraphy courses are on the pricier side, but the content is especially helpful for people having a difficult time transitioning their designs to digital form.
For example, Arneill's Digitize Your Designs course costs around $197. The price, however, can help entrepreneurs grow their digital lettering business to the next level.
Best for Hobbyists: Creativebug
The lettering content on Creativebug is ideal for hobbyists, scrapbookers, and journalers who want to add more beauty to their work. The material on this site is very sociable and craft-friendly.
For instance, some of the courses are set up like 30-day challenges that will help you take your hobby to the next level, without feeling like you’re boxed into an academic course outline. Each student can create an online profile that will include an avatar, classes they've taken, and a completed gallery of work. The most highly recommended course on the platform is Beginning Calligraphy with Maybelle Imasa-Stukuls.
Imasa-Stukuls is a modern calligraphy master who teaches students a modern calligraphy approach in an engaging and effective way. The four-part course is available with a basic subscription to Creativebug.
Before you sign up, see if there are any free trials available on the platform. Creativebug offers three plan options: Unlimited (roughly $8 per month), Unlimited Plus (around $10 per month), and Annual Unlimited Plus (about $8 per month).
How We Chose the Best Online Calligraphy Classes
After scanning a few hundred websites, we created a list of 20 contenders. First, we ranked each of these sites by their domain authority. Next, we analyzed the site content and noted features like user reviews, course previews and descriptions, the number of classes provided, and overall cost. We cross-referenced sites with their social profiles to gauge community involvement and overall credibility. Finally, we determined which site of the 20 was the best fit for each of our seven categories.
For instance, we chose Laura Hooper Calligraphy as Best for Gifting since hers was the only credible site that offered supplies and kits with each course. We chose Amanda Arneill for Best for Digital Hand-Lettering because she had the most comprehensive collection of classes about digital calligraphy. Each site will stand behind its course offerings, which is why we are confident including them in our roundup.