Summary form only given. CAD systems now enable us to manufacture complicated models. However, computers have yet to become usable at the very early stages of product design, where pencil and paper still reign. This is because present-day systems, with their focus on internal representation and dialogue hierarchies, require designers to leap large conceptual gaps when evolving from their idea of a desired object to the geometric model that formally expresses its intended shape. As computers become more sophisticated and powerful, alternative input modalities and interface techniques are emerging which form the basis for a new generation of sketching applications supporting what we call Calligraphic interfaces, where artificial dialogue constraints imposed by the previous generation of UIs are removed. We are exploring with minimalist approaches and techniques to approximate traditional methods including modeling, illustration and retrieval. I will talk about our research and ongoing projects at the Technical University of Lisbon, towards this goal.