At our last meeting you mentioned to my mother and I that you would recommend us to use calligraphy on our envelopes instead of labels. So I decided to do a little research and found so many different styles online. I'm confused exactly what calligraphy is. Can you help me?
Great question!! You are absolutely right ... there are many styles of calligraphy by many different artist. Calligraphy basically means - "Beautiful handwriting." What I would recommend is to show your calligrapher your invitation design and have them create a complimentary style that matches your fonts. If your invitation is modern, they will bring in a modern style. If your invitation is very classic with script fonts, most of the time a calligrapher can create their penmanship to look very similar. Just like each different invitation designer has their own signature style, each calligrapher has their own unique talent, so check out their portfolio first to see it's the style you are looking for.
Hope this helps!! If you are interested in reading more about calligraphy, this is the defination I pulled up from http://en.wikipedia.org
Calligraphy (from Greek κάλλος kallos "beauty" + γραφή graphẽ "writing") is a type of visual art. It is often called the art of fancy lettering (Mediavilla 1996: 17). A contemporary definition of calligraphic practice is "the art of giving form to signs in an expressive, harmonious and skillful manner" (Mediavilla 1996: 18). The story of writing is one of aesthetic evolution framed within the technical skills, transmission speed(s) and materials limitations of a person, time and place (Diringer 1968: 441). A style of writing is described as a script, hand or alphabet (Fraser and Kwiatkowski 2006; Johnston 1909: Plate 6).
Modern calligraphy ranges from functional hand-lettered inscriptions and designs to fine-art pieces where the abstract expression of the handwritten mark may or may not compromise the legibility of the letters (Mediavilla 1996). Classical calligraphy differs from typography and non-classical hand-lettering, though a calligrapher may create all of these; characters are historically disciplined yet fluid and spontaneous, improvised at the moment of writing (Pott 2006 and 2005; Zapf 2007 and 2006).
Calligraphy continues to flourish in the forms of wedding and event invitations, font design/typography, original hand-lettered logo design, religious art, announcements/graphic design/commissioned calligraphic art, cut stone inscriptions and memorial documents. It is also used for props and moving images for film and television, testimonials, birth and death certificates, maps, and other works involving writing (see for example Letter Arts Review; Propfe 2005; Geddes and Dion 2004).
Envelope Calligraphy by Roxanne at www.AZPenGraphics.com (she's awesome!!)