5 best software for calligraphy

Vlad Turiceanu
by Vlad Turiceanu
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  • Looking for a way to make your project truly stand out from the crowd? Digital calligraphy can be the answer you are seeking. 
  • Creating unique custom fonts that emulate handwriting has never been easier thanks to the dedicated calligraphy tools.
  • One of the most popular lettering software with many more features that will impress everyone is a tool from Adobe's suite.
  • Pick the best hand lettering apps for Windows 10 from our list below, and start planning your new project.
Best Software for calligraphy

Calligraphy is a visual art that refers to the execution of lettering with a brush, or other writing instruments.

Now let us shift the point of interest towards the digital era and yes, it is possible to practice calligraphy on your PC.

There are three types of calligraphy: Western, Eastern, and Arabic, each reflecting the language and handwriting of a specific region of the globe.

Unlike the conventional form of writing, digital calligraphy requires no special pens, inks, or brushes. However, it does require quality software that comes with various brush presets.

One might ask why bother with digitalizing calligraphy or creating calligraphic fonts when there are already so many designs available to choose from.

As in all other areas, it is important to find your own voice or in this case your own writing style in order to make your work stand out from the plethora of similar services available on the market.

Are you ready to step up your game with a professional tool?

If so, take a look at our selection below, compare and explore the different capacities that each software has to offer and become an expert at digital calligraphy.


What is the best software for calligraphy?

Adobe Illustrator

When it comes to the state of the art of illustration, Adobe Illustrator is the best software that money can buy.

The graphics software is used by millions of designers and artists to create anything from mobile graphics to book illustrations and much more.

One of its distinguishing features is its vectors based structure which means you will never have to deal with resolution issues. Your calligraphy can be easily scaled larger or smaller while preserving intact quality.

Besides, the Image Trace feature can quickly scan your calligraphic fonts and transform them into vectors. The Illustrator also boasts a user-friendly brush widely appreciated for its accurate results.

The tools included in the Illustrator’s suite enable you to find a font style that fits your work or turn to other graphic designers for calligraphic design inspiration.

You can even import your favorites by choosing from over 17,000 high-quality fonts with Adobe Fonts or sync with Adobe Stock and use it as a basis for custom fonts.

Let’s quickly go through its key features:

  • Custom font design (serif or sans serif fonts, handwriting, tattoos and many more)
  • Custom letter forms that fit your unique layout and design
  • Adobe Originals (available in Illustrator’s font menu, it allows you to choose an existing font to kick off your design process, then adjust the weight, width, or slant to suit your specific needs)
  • Sketch-based development (you can either draw by hand in Illustrator or import hand lettering / digital art from Adobe Photoshop)
  • Image Trace (transform your imported font sketch into an easily edited vector graphic to refine your work)
  • Integration options (third-party plug-ins can easily be integrated to help you finalize and manage your fonts)
Adobe Illustrator

Adobe Illustrator

Take your project from average to eye-catching with Adobe Illustrator! Its calligraphy and custom fonts make all the difference.
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Adobe Photoshop

Adobe Photoshop

Adobe Photoshop is the most popular graphics software for professionals and there are good reasons for that.

It’s the pinnacle when it comes to calligraphy work thanks to its numerous brushes and special effects, not to mention the fact that it gives you complete control over the lettering since you can edit your graphics pixel-by-pixel.

In calligraphy, each letter is carefully thought out according to the artist’s vision.

This leads to a wide variety of styles and Photoshop brushes cover them all: from spray paint or ink wash effect, precise linework shading with pencil, ink, and charcoal brushes, watercolor brushes to splatter effects.

You can perfect your calligraphy brushstrokes with thousands of preset high-quality Photoshop brush sets or create your unique, custom drawing brushes and sync them with Creative Cloud libraries.

Let’s quickly go through its key features:

  • Play with color and effects using custom or Photoshop preset brushes
  • Your work is automatically saved to the cloud for quick access, no matter where you are
  • Lens Blur to offer a more natural and realistic look when blurring an object in the foreground
  • Improved Content-Aware Fill
  • Object Selection tool (create fast and precise selections by drawing a simple rectangle)
  • Performance improvements (smoother panning, zooming, and navigating)

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Graphic Design Studio

Graphic Design Studio is a powerful vector drawing tool that enables you to sketch out your design or import a vector graphic in SVG format to add your own creative touch.

When it comes to calligraphy, the tool is suitable for both professionals and beginners who can use pre-designed graphics without the hassle of starting from scratch.

With a full artistic color palette, easy to use pen and pencil, tools that allow you to control size, shape, text, lines, and layers, you can start creating unique and stunning lettering designs with a creative edge in no time.

Let’s quickly go through its key features:

  • Advanced graphic design tools (including 2,000+ pre-designed vector graphics, and images)
  • Component Library (to save and reuse new graphics)
  • Full layer support (make the changes you want without disturbing other parts of your design)
  • Powerful editing tools
  • Full support for SVG files, including import and export
  • Creative filters and effects (3D tunnel effects and unique shapes, blurs, shadows & glows)
  • Creative background and fill textures
  • Artistic color palettes and gradients
  • 65+ commercial use fonts

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Calligraphr

Calligraphr_best calligraphy software

Calligraphr is a popular app that allows you to transform your calligraphy into fully functional vectors-based fonts with genuine custom designs.

Creating your own calligraphic artwork has never been easier thanks to the pens and pencils as well as color, line thickness, and transparency of each tool boasted by this software.

The best part is that you can even modify characters after scanning thanks to the internal image editor.

Let’s quickly go through its key features:

  • Standard Font files (TTF or OTFF formats which are easily editable and independent of the Calligraphr account once created and downloaded)
  • Character randomization (essential to simulate genuine handwriting)
  • Ligatures (suitable character sequences are automatically replaced with your specified ligatures)
  • Customizable templates (with exactly the character set you need for your font)

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Inkscape Calligraphy

Inkscape 1.0 download

Inkscape is definitely a powerful contender in the race for the best calligraphy tool thanks to some nifty features like the undo command which would not be possible with a traditional pen and ink.

Thanks to its flexibility, the tool enables both advanced and beginner users to design intricate calligraphy. Plus, Inkscape is able to utilize the pressure and tilt sensitivity of a tablet pen.

Let’s quickly go through its key features:

  • Width and thinning (to control the width of your pen and achieve the most impressive calligraphic strokes)
  • Angle and fixation (to control the angle of your pen in degrees, from 0 to 90 or to -90)
  • Tremor (to give a more natural look to the calligraphy strokes by producing anything from unevenness to blotches and splotches)
  • Wiggle and mass

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By emulating the look of handwriting, calligraphy fonts are more artistic than the average font.

If you decide to create your own, you have even better chances to produce an eye-catching design that is sure to impress the right audience for your project.

So why not try your hand at digital calligraphy with the help of a specialized tool? Let us know how that worked for you in the comments section below.


Frequently Asked Questions

  • There are numerous tools to which you can turn too in order to obtain impressive and professional-looking calligraphic fonts, so be sure to check out our best software calligraphy list to find what you need.

  • In order to create custom fonts, you can use an online font editor. Take a closer look at our best typography font design software list to find the proper tools for your needs.

  • It is possible to design fonts that emulate handwriting by utilizing calligraphy tools. Check out our best Windows 10 free fonts software list for more information.

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