Digital Lettering for Beginners – Cheap & Affordable Ways to Start Lettering (no iPad needed!)

Modern calligraphy has grown into such a popular, trendy hobby over the past couple of years. It was only last year when the beauty of hand lettering really piqued my interest. I saw beautiful artworks all over Instagram and decided to embark on my own lettering journey.

I began by watching YouTube tutorials, reading blog posts all over Pinterest, and finding inspiration from Instagram. It seemed like the essential tools were the iPad (S$1,199), Apple Pencil (S$189) and paid app, Procreate (S$14.98).

Unfortunately, I didn’t have an iPad of my own that was new enough to be compatible with Procreate. And to be honest, I wasn’t ready to shell out over $1.2k for a hobby that I wasn’t sure of.

However, I did not let myself get disheartened and continued searching for ways to use Procreate without breaking the bank. Here’s how I did it, and you can too!

All you need is any Apple device you already own (iOS 11.1 or later), the Procreate Pocket app, and any off-brand stylus. I got my stylus from Shopee, in a bulk of 10, for just $1.88! 

I highly recommend Shopee – you can find a ton of items for a low price there. If you’re a new user, use the promo code “MARIE222” at checkout, or click this link to get $10 off your first order!

I purchased Procreate Pocket last year and I’ve had no regrets since! While ‘miniature’ or ‘lite’ versions of more expensive paid apps tend to offer fewer features, Procreate Pocket is simply a full version of Procreate that is compatible with the iPhone.

In other words, you pay about $10 less to use Procreate on a smaller screen – a huge upside to anyone who might be unable to afford a newer iPad.

Sure, following YouTube and blog post tutorials may not be as straightforward. But the pocket version still offers the exact same features, albeit in a slightly different layout. As long as you use the app regularly, it shouldn’t be too hard to figure out!

I designed this customisable fox drawing (for sale on my Carousell page) using the rubber stylus I bought from Shopee, but I’d recommend getting one with a plastic tip like this. It would be a whole lot easier to use because a stylus with a rubber tip can bend easily, disrupting your lettering sessions.

… And that’s pretty much it!

An extra tip: Search for free Procreate brushes to expand your lettering abilities!

Hope you guys found this useful – thought I might share it as I’ve received plenty of questions on this, and there isn’t much info out there on iPhone lettering compared to iPad lettering.

Thanks for reading! Feel free to follow me on my lettering Instagram @letters.bymarie.