Wednesday, August 31, 2005

First writings

First writings
Originally uploaded by anyram.

This evening I had my first lesson in Japanese calligraphy. The photo is my first try at this beautiful Japanese art form. My teacher started me off with the hirigana because I know the basic strokes, even though she says they are harder to do correctly than the basic form of kanji (chinese characters). It is a very precise art. Each stroke is made in a particular order, and the motions of the brush (particularly for a beginner) are very specific -- how to make curves, how to end a stroke, and so on. I found it very relaxing. There is a great deal of consideration of the energy and the motion of the brush (fude in Japanese).

Sadly, one of the hardest parts for me is maintaining seiza position. This is the traditional way of sitting -- kneeling on the floor, with your bum resting on your heels. My knees don't like it, and my legs go to sleep. However, my teacher says that I have some natural ability. It must be all that pysanky when I was younger and more recent electron microscopy work.

In other traditional Japanese arts news, I have found a kendo teacher (and I even know when and where class is), but I'm going to hold off on starting until next week, when hopefully I'm good and recuperated from last week's excesses.

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