Materials and Techniques :Calligraphy and Inscriptions on Chinese paintings Prepared By: Ania Isobel Acebedo Sebastian Vines Arnisto Karane Seane Batas Elline Fritzie Domingo Christabel Ligpit Janica Denisse Santos
ChineseCalligrap hy• The history of Chinese calligraphy is as long as that of China itself. Calligraphy is one of the highest forms of Chinese art.• Chinese calligraphy serves the purpose of conveying thought but also shows the abstract beauty of the line. Rhythm, line, and structure are more perfectly embodied in calligraphy than in painting or sculpture.
Chinese Calligraphy - “Beautiful Writing” - Art of writing - Beautiful handwriting with the brush - Began with Hieroglyphics - Over the long ages, it has developed various styles and schoolsCalligraphy as Traditional Art - Occupies the same position as painting in the history of Chinese Art - Constitutes an indispensable part of the heritage of national culture
Traditional Chinese• Calligraphy 1. Seal Character (Zhuan)• 2. Official or Clerical Script (Li)• 3. Regular Script (Kai)• 4. Running Hand (Xing)• 5. Cursive Hand (Cao)
4 Treasures of the Study (Wenfang Sibao)- Indicating the high esteem in which the materials of calligraphy are held- Same materials employed by traditional Chinese PaintersBrush / Water Brush- Consists of a bundle of animal hairs (black rabbit, white goat, yellow weasel) pushed inside a tube of bamboo or wood- Comes in a wide variety of shapes and sizes that determine the type of line produced- Flexibility is common to all brushes
• 3 most used models: Yang Hao (Brush with Hairs of Goat) - Generally used to paint great surfaces and for gradations of colors• Lang Hao (Brush with Hairs of Wolf) - Used for the more precise layouts such as contours, the bamboos, the trees and the rocks• Jian Ho (Brush with Hairs of Goat and Wolf) - Combines the quality of the two preceding brushes.Paper• Made from various fibers (mulberry, hemp & bamboo)• Provided an inexpensive alternative to silk as a ground material for calligraphy and paintingInk stone• A carved stone slab with a reservoir for grinding inkInk• Usually made from lampblack (sooty residue created by burning pine resin or oil underneath a hood)
Basic Principles of Chinese Calligraphy• Empty the fist and keep the inside of palm round ( 掌虛 ) as if we can hold a small egg.• The benefits of keeping the Tiger Mouth round may be realized when one practices smaller size calligraphy in cursive style and writes curved strokes in faster speeds.• Keep the fingers firm ( 指實 ) and use the fingertips instead of knuckles to hold the brush.• Level the wrist to a more natural and horizontal angle and avoid strained angles.• Keep the brush upright. The technique or principle is called "round stroke" or "upright stroke."• Keep the wrist supple, firm, and soft. Do not tighten up the wrist.
Bao’s Methods• In the Ching Dynasty, Bao Shichen ( 包世臣,1775-1855) published a famous calligraphy book Yi Zou Shuang Ji ( 藝舟雙輯 ). His deep admiration for his teacher Deng Shiru ( 鄧石如 ) and his methods gave a revelation to later calligraphers such as Wu Rangzhi ( 吳讓之 ) and Zhao Zhiqian ( 趙之謙 ). In this book.• Bao emphasized the importance of holding a brush as adopted by Deng Shiru.
Three-Fingers Method• This method is used mostly when one is using the Hanging Arm Technique ( 懸肘 ) - holding the brush with the whole arm hanging in the air; the elbow, wrist, and hand must not rest on the desk. This method was widely used in the pre-Chin Dynasty periods for Zhuan Shu writing.• The Three-Fingers Method ( 三指法 ) insists on using fingertips tohold the brush instead of usingknuckles. Many calligraphers in theChing Dynasty used five-fingersmethods that let them rotate thebrush with knuckles whennecessary in writing a stroke.
Five-Fingers Method• five-fingers method is suitable for larger characters while a three-fingers method is excellent for smaller characters. However, there are no strict rules to use a specific method for a specific style or size. After one has studied and understood theories and principles, the methods can be discerned by the calligrapher’s understanding, needs, insights or preferences.
Hanging Arm Technique• The Hanging Arm Technique is being neglected today; it is also widely used improperly to brag ones skill level. Without doubt, this technique is the most important step in the training of a Chinese calligraphers skills.• If no part of the arm touches the desk, the strength of our whole body can pass through the shoulder, arm, elbow, wrist, and fingers into the brush tip. Only in this way will the strokes be correspondingly more vivid and profound.• To attain mastery of this method may require decades of persistent practice, discipline, bravery as well as good eyesight, sound personality, and a healthy nerve system
Inscriptions on Chinese paintings• One of the distinctive characteristics of Chinese painting is the use of inscriptions in poetry of calligraphy and of special seals as part of the painting itself. This was a major contribution made by scholar painters.• Its significance lies in its ability to express the theme and artistic conception of the painting more clearly and deeply while, at the same time, giving great insight into the artists individuality, emotions and views on art and life.
• In ink-and-wash paintings, the bright red seal adds a final touch of beauty. When preparing the inscription and seal, therefore, the Chinese painter, in addition to considering their content, has always given great thought to the placement, length and dimensions of the inscription and the position of the seal on the painting.
• The simplest inscription consists of the artists name and the date. Sometimes the inscription could include the occasion for the painting and the name of the person for whom the painting was done. It could be about the subject and style of the painting. Quite often the artist might include a piece of poetry or a literary allusion. These are all followed by the artists own seal.
• The seals can be carved in stone. It can contain a name, poetical saying, a design or symbol which has a connection with the painting. The seals are pressed into a pot or tin of cinnebar paste, a scarlet red color, and are impressed onto the painting. The paste contains mercuric oxide, ground silk and oils. It required a careful stamp as it is rather permanent. When using red seal on a monochrome painting, it is said to be "adding the eye to the dragon".