Fantastical Calligraphy in April

Online Presentation - Thursday, April 14, 2022, 7pm Pacific

The appearance of an alien script in a popular fantasy series like Star Wars, Lord of the Rings or Star Trek can evoke a sense of mystery and cultural identity. Imagine that you are the artist who has been asked to create a unique alphabet. How would you do it? In this presentation by noted local calligrapher Lisa Leong-Tsang, we will learn about the develop-ment of writing, examine a few fantasy scripts and practice making our own.


Lisa prepared a handout with samples, resources and a recommendation of a recorded lecture for those who want to know more about alphabets around the world. She has graciously made it available to everyone. You can download a copy here

Full size (10 MB)

Lower fidelity (2 MB)

Note:The default file name will be long and incomprehensible as prescribed by our website host, but don't worry, it's the right file if the name looks something like: 9f5973_5e8ebedfcdd443da98c7612216087cb4.pdf (seriously)


Briefly, the contents are:

  • Supplies

  • Resources mentioned

  • What is Asemic Writing

  • Samples of fantastical calligraphy (aka, asemic writing)

  • A Brief History of the Alphabet (with lots of historical samples)

  • Writing Around the World lecture (with description and Zoom link to the Letterform Archive presentation)


About the artist:

Lisa's artwork often incorporates calligraphy as a design element; it is her passion to share the beauty of written letters with the public and stress the importance of the written word in art.


Lisa's first art classes began in her father’s studio. Wing Leong, a master Chinese brush artist nurtured her love of art. Wing learned Western calligraphy from Lloyd Reynolds and Lisa continued her study with Robert Palladino (famously known as Steve Jobs' teacher in calligraphy) at Reed College. Through the years, she has learned from excellent teachers in traditional and contemporary methods.


Lisa also enjoys mixed media, jewelry, collage, quilting, book and doll making (which are skills inspired her mother, Yet Sim Leong, who could make anything with fabric and yarn) as well as learning ancient gilding techniques from early manuscripts. Lisa serves on the board of two calligraphy guilds, the Society for Calligraphy and Handwriting and Write On Calligraphers and shares art making locally as often as she can.


Calligraphy by Lisa Leong-Tsang, from the Write On Calligraphers website