Friday, November 11, 2011

Reinforcing drawing; Learning about line via drawing and by carving it

Over the years I have been drawing quite a bit in ballpoint. It gives me an immediacy and reinforces an ongoing practice in terms of a sure line. Anyway, these are a few drawings for a seal design for a young woman with an unusual name: Kazusa. Normally, I would be using a brush and sumi/boku, rather than ballpoint/biro. Unorthodox but works for me. These designs will be finessed later or perhaps directly when carving. It has been a little over a year and a half since I began carving seals and have carved 73 or so stones, some on multiple sides, Carving seals has made me see line in ways that I would perhaps not have seen by only drawing on paper and other surfaces. More on this later.
The notes below correspond to the styles of seasl scripts as drawn in the image on the right.Right, top down:
1. Koukotsubun Oracle bone script (Chinese, Jiaguwen) 甲骨文
2. Kinbun (Chinese, Jinwen) 金文

1. Kinbun 金文 
2. Moushikei kun boshi 孟敬訓墓誌 (Chinese, Mèngjìngxun mùzhì), from the 新書道字典 Shin Shodo Jiten (A New Dictionary of Shodo/New Calligraphy Dictionary). This script is taken from the tomb stone of Moushikei. The Chinese have a tradition of absorbing various inputs in the pursuit of refining their calligraphic abilities, including copying from grave markers and stones; and this goes back many centuries. 孟敬 (Moushikei, a name), 訓 (teaching), 墓 (grave) 誌. collectively epitaph 墓誌 as on the grave “marker/stone.”

1. Tetsusenshoten 鉃線小篆 (loose trans. Iron line Small seal script) 
2. Daiten Big Seal script (Chinese, Dazhuan) 大篆 
[btw, Smaller seal script Japanese Shoten, 
Chinese Xiaozhuang 小篆]
3. Kaninten 漢印篆

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