Progress with my Chinese Calligraphy

I started my Chinese calligraphy lessons a year after my retirement.

I know nothing about it at the time. My first teacher taught me all the basics of using the brush, what paper and ink to buy, how the signatory words are to be added, what seals are to be used, how the words / columns are to be structured etc.

For three years, I have been learning several styles of writing from him. I have also imitated hundreds of writings by famous historical and contemporary calligraphers and sometimes making up my own writings.

Some styles of writings demand writing it in a formal manner, a rigid or regal manner, some in a flowing manner. More recently, I like the cursive style of writing. I learn that the words should be a mixture of big and smaller characters, of light and bold characters and that words should be visualized to be connected horizontally as well as vertical between the rows. What is more important is that the finished product must be attractive and likable to read.

Unfortunately, my mom was diagnosed to have incurable cancer four years ago. From that moment on, I was more occupied with caring for her and assisted in whatever possible manner. My calligraphy learning did not come to a stop; I still churned out all the required homework, but obviously, something was lacking – the heart and my concentration in practicing calligraphy was no longer there.

Now that I am progressively walking out of my grief period, I found that I started to have the concentration and the heart to do better calligraphy. Meanwhile, I have also found a new teacher whom I consider very attentive, artistic and have a deep knowledge of calligraphy and how it should be taught. I am happy that I found her.

Posted are three pieces of the same calligraphy written yesterday in cursive style. I have written them with slightly different character sizes and compactness; the results are somewhat different. It took me about 1.5 hours to write all three; I was trying which one works out better.

I have posted a few pieces previously. I just want you to know that I am still progressing – the learning will take forever, I am sure.

18 thoughts on “Progress with my Chinese Calligraphy

  1. It is good news that your are starting to be able to redirect your energy to this creative endeavor, Michael. Having something to focus on as your move out of deep grieving is very healthy!

    • I still think a lot about mom daily but the feeling is getting less intense.
      As you say, it is good to redirect some of my focus towards other matters.
      Thanks very much for writing, Lindy 🙂

  2. It’s wonderful that you making good progress Michael. These all look very beautiful and harmonious to my eyes, and I’m only sorry that I’m unable to read them. I look forward to more examples.

    • Great to hear from you again!
      The characters in cursive are quite difficult to read or remember. Just trying to produce something like a picture.
      Will surely upload others when I make some progress 🙂

  3. I remember you posting something about this post-retirement “project” when you first began instruction. I’m so happy to see you have persevered, and to know the pleasure it adds to your life.

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