Session 3: Chinese Calligraphy for Beginners

Q & A from Session 2:

Q:  A new student asked:  how do we know where to start?

A:  There are rules of stroke sequences that would determine ‘where to start’.  For example, ‘from top to bottom’;’horizontal before vertical when they intersect’ so in the character 干, the first stroke is the top Short Horizontal ‘from left to right’, the second stroke is the long horizontal then last, the long vertical.  Learn the rules and you will be able to ‘read’ the sequence stroke by stroke.  I will speak more on this over the weeks to come.

Q:  How can I achieve the different beginnings in the Long Horizontal strokes?

First you look at the shape at the start: is it rounded or angular?  Each requires a different technique.  A rounded end is made by nudging the brush away from the direction of the stroke before proceeding, an angular end requires you to ready the brush and decisively fix the angle before moving on. (I demonstrate).

In Session 2, two more strays returned to the fold so we had ten students out of the twelve enrolled.  I spoke to the administrator and we agreed that the two no-shows will be barred from attending, their fees refunded.

By the time the students’ work were critiqued, their questions answered, new strokes introduced and demonstrated and the Long Horizontal revised, there was only a half hour left for students to practice as I go around to work with them one on one.

Session 3 will be spent consolidating and assessing students’ progress.  Students will be asked to demonstrate the Long Horizontal, the LH with a hook, A bend (combination of a horizontal stroke and a vertical stroke) and a Long Vertical stroke.  Then we will move on to sweeping strokes and talk about structure of characters.

I was pleased to see that a number of students did homework:







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