It’s a long-mythologized fact that doctors have the worst handwriting of any profession, but it looks like rappers could rank a close second. If you think your prescription is hard to read, try reading the cliff notes for a local rapper’s ill-prepared third-round battle-rap verse, scrawled on the interior of a matchbook.
Even if a rapper’s handwriting is illegible, the study of graphology purports that there’s much to glean from the way they construct their chicken scratch. Handwriting experts examine slant, upper and lower loops, and v-wedges, among other stylistic nuances in written text, to generate an analysis of personality characteristics and the psychological well-being of the writer. In other words, a graphoanalyst can probably tell if you’re a jerk based on how you cross your T’s.
Drake’s handwriting makes a rare appearance on the liner notes for If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late, and at first glance, it isn’t pretty. His all-caps, feverishly-scribbled penmanship doesn’t quite have the polished togetherness to match his sonic output. A week ago, it was easy to imagine Drake unsheathing an antique quill, and inking parchment scrolls with perfect calligraphy, akin to the Take Care insignia. The fact that he writes 99% of his lyrics in his Blackberry made this opulent image plausible for years, but the thank yous on If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late reveal that Aubrey’s handwriting is no more elegant than our weekly grocery list.
As an artist who is already markedly transparent within his lyrics, what more can be gathered from his written aesthetic? Given that the release of IYRTITL is still shrouded in mystery, from its hybrid “commercial mixtape” status to its vague-but-pointed project title, some between-the-lines analysis couldn’t hurt. We asked certified graphoanalyst Elaine Charal to tell us what Drake’s handwriting says about his character, and here’s what we learned.