KIZUNA hosts New Year's calligraphy workshop (18 January 2017)

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The first KIZUNA event of the year was a Japanese calligraphy workshop, held on 18 January with instruction provided by members of the Sumizome Shodo Kai, who teach classes at the Kyoto Prefectural International Center, and those of Kyoto University's own calligraphy club.

Participants first tried brush-writing kanji (Chinese characters) on hanshi calligraphy paper without any instruction. They then learned how to hold and move a brush, and listened to a short lecture on the origin of kanji. Working on kanji again with this information in mind helped them appreciate the importance of knowing the basics.

In the next session, participants practiced writing their favorite words. Some of them initially had difficulty controlling their brush strokes or the amount of ink in their brushes, but after diligently honing their skills with guidance from the instructors, all of them eventually produced beautiful writing on shikishi (signature boards), which they then took home as souvenirs.

Everyone enjoyed this traditional Japanese New Year's custom, as well as the opportunity to make new friends with other students.

A lecture scene

Learning from an instructor

Working on the word yujin ("friend")

A job well done!

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