My pattern making teacher saw one of my previous blog posts and commissioned me to do a Japanese calligraphy. She is about to move to her new apartment. She had ordered some furniture from Japan many months ago so I guess she wanted another Japanese accent where she will live.
Since I was not practising Japanese calligraphy for a while, I was not sure whether I could produce a high-level performance. I said to my teacher that I would try my best. I ordered 300 rice paper sheets for my practice.
She wanted the message symbolises “happy peaceful home”. The characters were up to me. So I thought about several options and started to practice.
People who do not know what good calligraphy pieces are, I guess everything would look very similar to them. But I know what is good and what is not acceptable. I practised so many pieces but I could not produce something I was happy with so my practice went on.
In the meantime, I had to go back to Japan to see my parents how they were going. Over there, I purchased more paper and materials. After I came back to Australia, I spent many more days of practising. But I could not still produce something I was happy with.
I got stressed out. Since the deadline was not close, I decided to leave it for a while. In the midst of struggling, it made me think that how important it was to practice the craft regularly if I wanted to keep at it.
After a while, I started to produce Japanese calligraphy again. Paper got wrinkled after drawing on rice paper. I ironed it to flatten but it was difficult to make it completely flat.
The top two was the size that my client was after. It is approximately 70cm by 30cm of rice paper. In the photo, it is already seen wrinkle happened. After ironing, it looked somewhat better but I could not make it flat enough. So I decided to offer to the client other pieces. See the below photo.
The size of the paper was A3. I had leftover special Japanese washi papers and I sacrificed all the papers to practice. I was happy with those pieces so I decided to hand them in.
In the end, the client also wanted to have the 70cm by 30cm piece even though the paper was not flat. I appreciate that she understands and accepts the charm and uniqueness of authentic handmade products.
I may not accept commission work in the future because I get so stressed out. But I am happy to express my freestyle of art through Japanese calligraphy.
All the best,