There’s always that one kid in class who writes perfectly, like every word was typed and printed out in the neatest font. Looking at their handwriting, my big, fat, round letters of a pre-school child often seemed like an irreparable failure.


Our handwritings represent a part of our identities. As we grew up, every experience that shaped our lives gave us the choice to change how we perceive the world. The way we write on paper is the way we see ourselves. It’s one of the many ways we express our true selves.


Today, we share some of our favourite ‘ugly’ handwritings with you, all by incredible people. They are not beautiful nor ugly to us—simply authentic, genuine, and truthful of the owner’s spirit.



 Henri Matisse


The rounded letters with cursive strokes are elements that we can also see in some of his most known paintings. Even in his handwriting, Matisse presents a strong sense of continuity, every letter linking to the next. It’s amazing how every phrase can look like individual pieces of artworks too!




 Franz Kafka


Perhaps it’s really not all that surprising that this handwriting belongs to the fantastic modernist writer. Give The Metamorphosis a read and tell us your thoughts don’t resemble a flurry like this after. Some might call this ugly or illegible—we call this a grand work in progress.




 Josephine Baker


The quick strokes are certainly mirrored in her fast-paced performances. Forever the queen of our hearts, here she is, performing at the age of 49, not out of breath for even a bit. Though it’s beautifully slanted, her writing proves difficult to be read—we’d like to think that every person is a little bit of an enigma themselves.




 Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart


Like a thought that can’t stop—not unlike his music—Mozart’s writing looks like an unending stream of consciousness. It reminds us of his Piano Sonata No.16 in C Major, where there were many times when the notes seemed to end, but they picked up immediately again after. The words form a fortress of a paragraph on paper, a style that’s difficult to mimic.




 Marcel Proust


Proust’s writing reflects exactly the man he was — a great thinker whose incredibly detailed thoughts had to be unravelled and deciphered carefully. It’s no surprise he was capable of writing a seven-volume novel on the theme of involuntary memory.



Every person’s handwriting has its own spirit and style, so embrace your handwriting—no matter how illegible, cursive, messy, or ugly—it’s yours, and it’s up to you to let it be a part of yourself. Take joy in the mess that we all are because it’s exactly what makes the world so unexpectedly beautiful.


P/S: Come join the Handwriting Challenge happening on our Instagram right now! It’s easy — just post a picture of your handwriting and hashtag it with #writewithmossery and #writethisinyourhandwriting.




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