Sakura Sakura my Cherry Blossoms

Hi everyone,

I hope you are well and enjoying the spring breeze.

– Have you already seen your first cherry blossom of the year ?!

In March I’ve given a Shodo workshop with the theme word YOZAKURA 夜桜 – Cherry blossom at night.
We’ve practised YOZAKURA in two styles – Kaisho (block) and Gyosho (semi-cursive).
I was very impressed by the mindfulness process of all participants.

©RIE TAKEDA

About Sakura, cherry blossom

Sakura cherry blossoms are without a doubt the most loved flowers in Japan.

As many know, cherry blossoms have a very short life in high spring time like in March and April.

As Sakuras are in full colour full bloom, might stay for a week or two – however a strong spring wind can instantly blow all blossoms away within a moment. 

One night, Sakura is presenting its height of beauty, the next morning the pinky blossom could be all gone. One could absolutely never tell how long the breathtaking Sakura reminds in a full bloom.

Therefore the Japanese see and reflect the impermanent beauty as their own life circle.

And they see the whole transformation of Sakura as beauty – even it is withered just like their life-circle.
That’s why they gather and celebrate the arrival and the momentum beauty of the spring under the Sakura trees, called HANAMI Sakura viewing. Capturing the momentum of beauty and appreciating the present moment. 

Like this Sakura also strongly presents the Ukiyo ’floating world’ as well as the Wabi-Sabi philosophy, the quintessential Japanese aesthetic which is a beauty of things imperfect, impermanent and incomplete. 

In my sessions/workshops, I encourage my students to envisage the feel of these Sakura elements specially the Wabi-Sabi aspect – so impermanent and sentiment and to bring the input into the movement as they do the Seisho at the end.
(Seisho is the calligraphy with clear mind done at the final stage of Shodo practice)

Here are some Sakura inspired Haikus.

*Sakura, sakura
they fall in the dreams
of sleeping beauty
/ Yosa Buson (1716-1784)

*Scatter layer by layer,
eight-layered
cherry blossoms
/ Masaoka Shiki (1867-1902)



*Cherry blossom petals
blown by the spring breeze against
the undried wall
/ Masaoka Shiki (1867-1902)

*A lovely spring night
suddenly vanished
while we viewed cherry blossoms
/ Matsuo Basho (1644-1694)

*Photos by Jake Rajs

Moreover, I share one of my Painted Poem series.
As you can imagine I’ve painted several Sakura works in the past 20 years!

藍桜   SAKURA IN INDIGO

さくら 
さくら 
私のさくら

桃色夜桜は
今夜のごちそう

Sakura sakura, my sakura

The pink cherry blossom is

Tonight’s beautiful treat.

藍桜  SAKURA IN INDIGO

Sumi ink and Gouache on handmade paper, 70x100cm

2010 ©RIE TAKEDA

For now
Let’s enjoy every moment of this sunny spring….

Stay safe and inspired.

HAPPY PRACTICE!

ARIGATO – Rie

shodo mindfulness method
http://www.shodocalligraphy.com

Sanshotai 三書体 :紫

Morning calligraphy ( 朝書道 )
– Violet, Purple
– Murasaki, Shi / むらさき、シ
In three calligraphy styles
#sanshotai
Sosho ⬅️Gyosho ⬅️Kaisho

#rietakeda #shodo #japanesecalligraphy #japanischekalligraphie #shodokurs #kalligraphiekurs #calligraphycourse #mindfulnesstraining #achtsamkeitstraining #mindfulcalligraphy #brushmeditations #meditations #kanjilearning #kaisho #gyosho #sosho #zen #calligraphystyles #violet #purple

Happy Practice!

Arigato,

Rie

Sanshotai : 訪 To Visit

Hello everyone,

Hope you are enjoying the Easter season.

Here is another Sanshotai snap from this morning.

Have you seen the cherry blossom yet?!

Kanji: 訪

– To Visit

– Otozu_retu, Tazu_neru, Hou

In Sanshotai three calligraphy styles

Sosho ⬅️Gyosho ⬅️Kaisho

-Etymology

: 言/ Word, to say, to speak

: 方/ wide, four directions

訪 ; initially meant ‘ asking widely in order to follow a line of inquiry ‘ which involved ‘ visiting many people ‘ and – now ‘ to visit ‘ is a major meaning. It rarely means ‘ to inquire ‘ nowadays.

-Radical :言

Happy Practice‼︎

ARIGATO,

Rie

Distance learning

I would always recommend you all to learn Shodo with a qualified calligraphy teacher. Even if each teacher has a different way of teaching, it is far better than learning at home alone with books and a youtube channel.

If you haven’t got any teacher near by,  it is worth finding a good teacher and travel to learn the techniques every few months preferably.

The calligraphy books and the youtube channel are only supplying extra information to compare and provide possible input into your learning process.

I find it is a pity and heart breaking when an enthusiastic person tries to learn Shodo for a while by oneself – and sadly all what he/she did was just wrong movement. 

One can not learn the art of Shodo by your self at all. You could maintenance it once you buid a solid foundation but not start it from scratch just like other Do-Art (Judo,  Karatedo, Sado,  Kado..). It is not possible because one needs to see the hands on guidance and practise it together in a specific process to complete the stage.

The way of doing basic techniques you learned from your teacher should always remain the same. Otherwise it would become terribly confusing if you pick up other ways of doing a particular technique.

Zen text working progress from Michael’san

I have some students around Europe who come and learn in some intensitive private sessions or workshops a few times a year. (at least once a year) They are from all levels like beginners to the master class and have various backgrounds and professions.  Surprisingly they all keep up their skills and keep brushing up new techniques everytime I see them.

I am more and more convinced that my original method is working for many – including some Japanese students young to senior.  

And I am constantly discovering new elements in the art of Shodo as well as the way of teaching.

These are from one of my distance learners, Marco-san in the U.K. – Seishos are corrected and feedback is given. 

If you live in Germany, France or Switzerland- U.K., Europe, you are always welcome to learn through my method and later you could continue your practice by distance learning.

Happy Practice!

Arigato,  Rie

One of snaps from my Instagram:

Instagram link

www.shodocalligraphy.com

Sanshotai : To rise

Another Sanshotai (three calligraphy styles) from my morning calligraphy routine. Lately my choice of Kanji is very much inspired by the beautiful Autumn colours and the atmosphere…

– Shou,  Nobo-ru

– To rise

In Sandhotai

You can see the development from the right hand side.

Sosho ⬅  Gyosho ⬅ Kaisho

Link to my Instagram 

Happy Practice!

Arigato,  

Rie

www.shodocalligraphy.com

www.shodokalligraphie.com

Sanshotai “Lake”

Here is another Sanshotai (three calligraphy styles) from my morning calligraphy routine.

Kanji “湖”

– Mizuumi, Ko

– Lake

Sosho  ⬅ Gyosho  ⬅ Kaisho

The image is from my Instagram account; https://www.instagram.com/p/BV7AnaTHW_7/

 I found this beautiful vintage Kimono fabric from my grandmother’s Kimono box.  A little fresh breeze for your hot day.

Happy Practice!

Rie

www.shodocalligraphy.com

Shakyou Calligraphy

I am just introducing the Shakyou 写経calligraphy with the Heart Sutra (Hannya-Shingyo) to the advanced students.

They are doing very well!! Despite the tiny Shakyou brush…. 

Once one gets used to it, the brush movement would become lighter and smoother – and eventually you would feel very meditative just like hearing the hymn of Heart Sutra.
Happy Practice!!

Rie

www.shodokalligraphie.com

酉年 2017 from the Monkey to the Rooster

How did you start your 2017?!

The year of Monkey was a quite restless and messy one,  loads of changes happened in the world – around us.

Let us hope that the kind Roosters will bring us some peace and harmony.

This year,  the Chinese zodiac new year starts on the 28th. Jan.

The Sylvester is on Friday the 27th.

I give myself a second chance to start the year this week,  so I could property leave some monkeys behind and welcome the Roosters….

I wish you all a healthy joyful year 2017!

ARIGATO!

OTEHON Text: Three Styles

It is still chilly outside and we had some snow this morning!
The Sakura is just coming to us soon… but shall we finish this cold wind off with the three Shotai-practice?!

This is the text to practise 3 calligraphy styles and learn about the style development of the Kanji characters.
I would recommend it is suitable for colder seasons.
It is great for the advanced learners.
For the upper-intermediate students, please practise only two styles: Kaisho and Gyosho. You can use a medium sized brush as well as a bigger one.
Please always start to practise from the Kaisho, Gyosho and to the Sousho.

Harder haired brush is suitable.
Papers : a whole Hanshi or a half sized Hanshi
Time: please take 30min-40 min longer than usual Text


 

“SEI SOU SHIZUKANI SHO WO HIMOTOKU”

晴窓 静かに 書を 繙く

(せいそう しずかに しょを ひもとく)

訳>晴るき明るき窓の下に心静かに読書する

Reading the pages

Quietly peacefully

At the sunny bright window

 

 

晴窓静繙書せいそうしずかにしょをひもとくweb

*From the left: Sosho-Gyosho-Kaisho

 

Happy Practice!!

Arigato.

Rie stamp

Calligraphy Style : KANA

KANA
仮名 かな
( syllabic script )

kana-example2

Kana is a calligraphy style developed and practiced only in Japan.
It is an amazingly delicate, light and elegant script.
-And it is quite distinguishable compare to other calligraphy styles.

Kana text typically runs and flows on fine paper like a gentle water stream
breathing colourful air and whispering secret dreams.

– Kana is considered to be most mastery, skillful and aesthetic calligraphy style.
It needs highly trained techniques and fine skills as well as a deep understanding of aesthetics in spacing and positioning.

It demands of a calligrapher also a vast level of
sensitivity and knowledge of Japanese Waka poems.
Classic Haiku and Tanka poems are very often used for Kana text.

kana-example-for-kana-style.jpg

Kana text is very cursive script (Sousho 草書) consisting of KANA  (hiragana) or
often KANA and KANJI (or Manyogana)mixture.

A delicate, slim small Kana brush is used for practice.

Kana style is also known as Onnade (woman’s/female’s hand 女手)
because it was mainly used and practised by court ladys and women
during the Heian-period (794-1185).

kana-example3.jpg
 * images are from the text archive school of shodo
Rie stamp

San-Sho-Tai – 三書体

SAN-TAI-JI 三体字 / SAN-SHO-TAI 三書体 – 3 BASIC CALLIGRAPHY STYLES

They are three basic calligraphy styles which commonly used and practiced :

KAISHO 楷書- Block style (regular script / standard script)

GYOUSHO 行書- Semi cursive style

SOUSHO 草書- Cursive style

黄鳥話春深

         Sousho                Gyousho                   Kaisho


About the text

黄鳥 春を 話すること 深し

kouchou haru wo wasurukoto fukashi

Meaning:

鶯は窓外で終日呟いている

Bush warbler (Uguisu)has been singing all day outside the window.