Graphology is the study of analyzing handwriting. It’s been a source of debate for years whether or not this “science” can truly pinpoint someone’s personality based solely on their writing style, but that doesn’t mean it has no basis in reality. According to some, studying one’s handwriting can provide insights into a person’s emotional state, and feelings, and disposition.
So, even if graphology isn’t always one hundred percent accurate, it’s still a fun exercise to take a look at our own etchings and scribbles and, using handwriting analysis basics, see what they may reveal about ourselves.
Granted that we mostly use technology these days and find it strange to write with a pen/pencil – but still – let’s have some fun!
Here are some handwriting analyses of some of history’s most famous artists. What better place to look for interesting signatures than those signed on beautiful art?
Let’s look at the autographs of Miro, Rembrandt, Picasso and Dali. Study your own handwriting based on these analyses.
Miró and Letter Size
According to graphology, the size of a signature can tell us about self-image and confidence levels. Here’s what each signature size means:
- If your letters are small, it could indicate introspection, focused, and introversion.
- If your letters are medium-sized, you may be modest and well-adjusted.
- If you have large letters, you may be confident, upbeat, and positive.
In the artist Joan Miró’s signature above, the large “M” shows confidence and a big, upbeat personality. We can see this reflected in the painter’s pioneering work in the Surrealist movement, when he sought to challenge the traditions of painting.
Rembrandt and Letter Width
Size and width may seem like similar characteristics, but handwriting analysts get very detailed when it comes to letter width. Here’s what each letter width means about the writer’s disposition:
- Very small letter width shows a rational, precise, or demanding personality.
- Small letter width means one is practical, routine-oriented, meticulous, and even shy.
- Medium letter width shows you are spontaneous yet balanced.
- Wide letters are a sign of confidence, optimism, and good communication.
- Very wide letters show someone might be prideful, vain, or visionary.
Looking at the 17th-century painter Rembrandt’s signature, the wide letters show an extroverted personality. They also show that he was communicative, exemplified by his many pupils. However, the wide spacing between letters indicates a desire for recognition, perhaps explained by Rembrandt’s early success as a portrait painter.
Picasso and Letter Spacing
Letter spacing is thought to show our level of openness. Here’s what the spaces between your letters might reveal:
- Little to no gaps between letters show someone may be: intellectual, anxious, or even closed off.
- Large gaps, however, show an expansive personality and generosity.
In Pablo Picasso’s signature, the large spaces between letters, especially between the “i” and “c,” indicate that he was cheerful and friendly. The wide lettering shows that he was also optimistic and communicative, which we can connect with both his political activism as well as his enormous impact on Cubism.
Dalí and Letter Slant
Supposedly, the slant of your handwriting can reveal your emotional state. Here’s what each slant can tell us:
- When your letters slant left, you could be frustrated, reserved, or having trouble making decisions.
- If they slant right, you could be feeling affectionate, honest, and resistant to convention.
- If your letters are straight and don’t slant at all, your mindset may be calm, determined, and stable.
Salvador Dalí’s signature shows how different slants can combine to show multiple states. The slant in the beginning shows honesty and resistance to convention. Then, it straightens out slightly at the end, which indicates determinedness and intelligence. Indeed, Dalí is known for both his thought-provoking, surreal paintings as well as his eccentric personality.
Last but not least, pen pressure is said to be indicative of one’s feelings. You can tell how much pressure you put into your handwriting by how light or dark your letters are. Here’s what different pen pressures can say about the writer:
- Light pressure is indicative of someone who is doubtful, insecure, or feeling ungrounded.
- Heavy pressure shows determination, with consistent, strong-minded efforts.
- Mixed pressure shows the writer could be impulsive, sensitive, or is having trouble concentrating.
Now that you’ve seen example analyses of famous artists’ autographs, it’s time to try it out on your own handwriting or signature! Grab something you’ve written recently, whether it’s a journal entry or signed document, and use the above tips to see if your personality is truly reflected in your writing.
You can even compare your current handwriting style with something you wrote years ago, and see if the shifts in your mindset are reflected in the changes in your writing.
Have fun with it, and remember to always take handwriting analysis with a grain of salt. It might not say everything about you, but on the other hand, you never know what traits and insights you might discover if you look.
Check out the full artist signatures infographic from 1stDibs:
What did you learn about your own handwriting?
Do share in the comments!