I’d like to share an Otehon text TOMODACHI 友達: Friend/friendship.
This is a great text to practise various Harai techniques.
I know the SHINNYO radical is often a tricky one to practise for many learners. But trust me- More practise, better you get!
And it is such a beautiful movement your body would always remember!
My tip: please pay attention to the energy movement, specially “up-and-down” contrast in SHINNYO.
【友】 Tomo/ Yuu
Is developed from the pictograph of two hands: giving hands and helping each other, further developed into the meaning of sharing a same spirit/will.
Otehon : TOMODACHI
A snap from my workshop in July .
Thank you for coming to the last Shodo workshop of the year in Basel(CH) /Bad Saeckingen (DE) area.
Our Shodo text was ;
“EIYA 永夜 “means long nights symbolizing the winter nights.
It can be read “nagai yoru”
•EI : 永 / eternity
•YA : 夜 / night(s)
”永“ is an extremely important Kanji character because it includes eight basic yet fundamental brush strokes for Kaisho/Block style – it called eight rules (八法)
Even if you are already intermediate level or advanced level practicing Gyosho style, winter season is a good time to reflect and review the basic strokes and techniques. You will see that each brush movement would become clearer and more developed after a few practices.
Here I put two images ; extra information about Kanjj science and background if you are interested.
I hope you had a great start of the year 2019! This is the year of the boar 🐗
Best wishes for the New Year.
Let’s hope the year of the Boar will bring us courage, peace and harmony!
Kakizome 2019 書初め is ;
The first calligraphy of the year,
The New Year’s calligraphy.
Of course we have done with the Kanji
“ 亥 “ ;
means boar in the zodiac calendar.
Normally “ 猪 “ is commonly used for boar.
On the Kakizome day, a new brush is
often brought in symbolizing the new start / the beginning.
Here I share some Kakizome pictures of my daughter which we did on 3rd January.
Yes, sure – we did the warming-up practices as usual!
Here comes a picture from the children’s class this week!
All did excellent Kakizomes and I asked them to write their individual theme for 2019.
Enjoy the learning process.
Thank you very much for your support this year!
The end of year is the busiest season in Japan just like pre-Christmas time in Europe.
The actual 31st December is called OMISOKA 大晦日.
In order to welcome the new year with a transparent fresh mind, families come together to clean up the house clearing the dirt of the old year.
Normally it becomes so quiet and empty in the cities as many go back to their home town during this time.
Here is the perfect text to finish off the year!
; New Year’s Eve, end of year
年 Toshi ：year, season, years
越しKoshi : to transit, go over
Good bye the year of the Dog!!
Enjoy the last hours of 2018!
I hope you are enjoying the beautiful advent time!
All Shodo workshops are done for this year.
Lots of frosty-winter calligraphy texts.
Otehon texts for December workshop in Freiburg
Thank you for attending the workshops here in Freiburg and also in Bad Säckingen.
Compliment on your mindfulness process!
From the last workshop in Bad Säckingen
Otehon: Fuyu no Tomoshibi
From the latest workshop in Freiburg
冬 : Kanji / ふゆ : Hiragana /フユ : Katakana
•Meaning : Winter, Winter season
•Pronunciations : Fuyu, Tou
•Etymology : ending + ice
冬 ; means the end of four seasons, the time when things get frozen.
冬山 / 冬月 / 冬天 / 冬至 / 冬眠
Thank you to all who came to the workshop in March.
All did excellent calligraphy-hours!
Big compliment on your mindfulness and deep concentration! Well-done!
I am happy to meet such beautiful minded people and to show them the Art of Japanese Calligraphy.
Next Workshop in Freiburg is on Sunday, the 22nd. April
No more winter texts for us! Spring is here!
I hope you are enjoying the beautiful Autumn colours.
I would like to update a new Autumn text in Hiragana.
It is suitable for the beginners and those who are eager to brush up Hiraganas.
The Otehon text : OTSUKIMI おつきみ
It has four Hiraganas.
– For medium to big brush, both hard and soft.
– make sure you fold the paper into four boxes
– Loads of Nuki* Slide out techniques in the text, so the warming-up practice with spirals recommended.
– For Hane*jumping technique, make sure you do the 1*2*3 movement with your brush.
Movement 1; Pause~ the place where you stop at the first stroke
Movement 2 ; Preparation~ you open the hair of brush little bit.
Movement 3 ; To jump ~ you pull the energy up through your naval and slowly proceed to jump.
– Make sure you are able to imagine the clear picture of the moon you like and an extra feeling for that moon.
– Kanji for that text is; “お月見” or “月見”, you can drop the お.
I hope you are enjoying these hot sunny days! Are you brushing up your calligraphy skills?! Or doing more stroke-practice?!
Before the summer holiday ends, I would like to post an Otehon for the month of August.
The summery text you can not avoid ….
“Aka-i-kin-gyo (Jap) ~ Red goldfish”
*Kingyo: Goldfish (Kin; Gold +Gyo; Fish)
*4 Kanjis and 1 Hiragana
Please check all balance lines, composition frames and some tips above.
Each Kanji have more less a clear middle line. Always start with a clear angle and check which brush technique should be applied.(side or direct brushings)
Recommended brush size is the medium to the big. Both hard or soft haired are suitable for this text.
Otehon for early spring….
” Koharu ” in Kaisho style
*Haru : spring
➡early spring, the beginning of spring
*For the beginners to the inter-mediate level1.
*With a medium or a big brush
小: Hane-Jumping technique ; directly before sarting the jumping, the curve should go little outwards(to the right hand side). More cursuve than straight. The Hane Jumping does not need to be big.
春: Three horizontal lines are in 1. bending upwards, 2.straight up, 3. bending downwards
Left Harai: A long streching lune. Just before letting the enegry/pressure out, try to open the hair little bit.
Right Harau : Starting calmly rather thin and gradually opening the hair. Always checking the balance.
Before you do the Sun”at the end, check the middle line and adjust. The right vertical line of the Sun should be longer.
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.
Do you enjoy watching the winter stars?!
I love the winter stars..they look bright, clear and so beautiful.
This Otehon is perfect for our cold icey evenings.
The text is called; “Fuyu no Ryuusei”
The direct translation is like..
“A shooting satr in winter (sky)”
This Otehon consists of four letters.
1.冬 Kanji ~fuyu, Winter
2.の Hiragana ~ particle between two nouns
3.流 Kanji ~ Ryuu, to flow
4.星 Kanji ~ Sei/ Hoshi, Star(s)
*流星 ~ Ryuusei, a shooting star
-for the beginner to intermediate level
-using medium/large brush, can be both hard or soft haired
-if you are beginner, make sure you practised already jumping, corner, slide-out techniques at least a few hours.
*Above: A Kanji ” Star ” in Sanshotai.
Maples, high sky, yellow leaves…. yes! it is “Autumn here.
The Autumn season gives us always beautifully inspiring poetic texts for our calligraphy courses.
In this month, naturally still …..hanging on to the moon!!
“つき てんしんに いたる ところ”
( Tsuki Tenshin Ni Itaru Tokoro )
As the moon rises to the very height of the sky,
Nature shows us its beauty”
tsuki tenshin ni itaru tokoro
-Using a medium to a big brush
-Broad, light and stable Gyosho movement
-All Hane* Jumping techniques here are strong and longer
-Start with a folded paper ( into 6 boxes )and mark the middle lines and middle points
-Try to associate the image of the moon with your personal autumn feeling
-One can also try both with hard and soft brushes
Wish you all a pleasant Shodo practice.
Enjoy the autumn energy flow, moment by moment!!
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）
Reading the pages
At the sunny bright window
*From the left: Sosho-Gyosho-Kaisho
OTEHON Text : “ TOMODACHI” (Friend)
This is prepared for the beginners class and kid’s class for the third grade 7-8 year-old. The meaning is friend or friends.
友 : Tomo / YU
to be together, to meet spend time together as friend
harmonious brothers/ sisters
harmonious relationship, to work together
Origin: the shape of two hands describes giving both hands and helping each other.
→friend(s) who shares the same truth and values.
Please make sure you practice each Harai techniques correctly.
For Tomo, always check the middle line and the whole balance.
For Hiraganas, try to bring the crossing point at the middle of the second line.
You can write your name/calligraphy name in the middle of the empty space.
Calligraphy text for the month of May
▲Kana Style Calligraphy with thin long-Kana brush.
( for-upper intermediate and advanced students-)
菜の花や 海(うみ）すこし 見ゆ 山のかた”
Nanohanaya Umisukoshimiyu Yamanokata
Looking through the sea side
From the top sleeve of the mountain
〜 OTEHON 〜
Calligraphy text for the month of February :
5 Kanji characters in Kaisho-style
with small-medium brush.
( for – intermediate and upper intermediate students-)
Calligraphy text Feb.
KOUBAI YUKI WO OBITE KOUBASHI
川辺の梅の花は 雪をおびて 香りを 放っている
Plum flowers at the river covered with a belt of snow,
spreading over their spring fragrance.