High quality paper, which has good consistency of absorption, although parchment or vellum is often used, as a knife can be used to erase imperfections and a light-box is not needed to allow lines to pass through it.
Normally, light boxes and templates are used to achieve straight lines without pencil markings detracting from the work.
As writing withdrew to monasteries, uncial script was found more suitable for copying the Bible and other religious texts.
A particularly modern example is Timothy Botts' illustrated edition of the Bible, with 360 calligraphic images as well as a calligraphy typeface.
Several other Western styles use the same tools and practices, but differ by character set and stylistic preferences.
Unlike a typeface, irregularity in the characters' size, style, and colors increases aesthetic value, though the content may be illegible.
Many of the themes and variations of today's contemporary Western calligraphy are found in the pages of The Saint John's Bible.
Ruled paper, either for a light box or direct use, is most often ruled every quarter or half inch, although inch spaces are occasionally used.
This is the case with litterea unciales (hence the name), and college-ruled paper often acts as a guideline well.
There are some styles of calligraphy, such as Gothic script, that require a stub nib pen.
Writing ink is usually water-based and is much less viscous than the oil-based inks used in printing.
Quality writing had a rhythm and regularity to the letters, with a "geometrical" order of the lines on the page.
Each character had, and often still has, a precise stroke order.
Each region developed its own standards following the main monastery of the region (i.e.