I’m going to stray off-topic here a bit with something I’d like to share with you guys.
I have lousy penmanship, and years ago I got an idea to write a piece on how to have a stylish signature. Inspired by a description of the brushwork of one of my favorite artists, Belle Epoque portrait painter Giovanni Boldini, and being a fencer, the word I stuck on was “swashbuckling.”
I finally got the opportunity to write a piece called “How To Get Yourself a Swashbuckling Signature” for Gilt Groupe’s new Park & Bond website.
For research, I interviewed a calligrapher who gave me a good overview on fresh ways to stylize your signature, and it turned out my own handwriting was not irremediable.
After I turned the story in, I stumbled by chance across a YouTube clip from the old TV show “What’s My Line.” Celebrity guests used to sign their name on a chalkboard when they came on stage. There was talk that P&B might be able to cut a video that would allow you to actually watch guys with cool signatures write their names — all the better to copy their strokes — but it didn’t happen.
But I must have watched 40 or so clips, and here are my favorites. Check out the “John Hancock” of these guys:
Now for the Ivy Style tie-in: Below are the signatures of some of the famous men we’ve written about here, along with links to our stories about them.
I think I like Cyrus Vance, Jr.’s signature the best. — CHRISTIAN CHENSVOLD