Literally meaning Beautiful Art, calligraphy or orshufa is a form of visual art. The history of Chinese calligraphy is as ancient as China itself. Of the four major disciplines of Chinese literati, calligraphy is regarded as the most elite and sophisticated of the skills; others being musical instruments, painting and board games. Chinese calligraphy is popular across the globe because of the beauty which is reflected from its precisely crafted pattern of characters. Although many calligraphers in China have devoted their entire lives for the love of calligraphy but the names of few pioneers still top the list and even today, the techniques and unique styles of ancient calligraphy invented by them are practiced religiously. Ouyang Xun, Yan Zhengqing and Wang Xizhi were the three calligraphers who reached the realms of calligraphy; and are still highly respected for the contribution they made towards the furtherance of this art.
Becoming an Expert in Chinese Calligraphy

The secret of becoming an expert calligraphist is directly linked to practice. Yes, practice is what results in extraordinary pieces of calligraphy. And don’t forget to add the topping of patience and desire, without which your success pie of calligraphy would be imperfect. The more effort and time you invest in getting the hang of calligraphy, the more proficient you will become in creating masterworks; and once calligraphy starts running in your blood, you can do marvels.

Calligraphy in China is reckoned as the leader of all arts and has a significant role in preserving and promoting Chinese culture. Some calligraphists deem calligraphy as the most expressive and sublime form of art for it is a reflection of emotions, intellect, background, accomplishments and moral fibre of the person threading characters. As per the words of a Chinese saying:

"The way characters are written is a portrait of the person who writes them.”
Learning and Mastering the Art of Chinese Calligraphy

Whenever the topic of Chinese calligraphy comes under discussion, the two common questions raised by foreigners are:

Do I need to master Chinese language before learning Chinese calligraphy?
How much time it takes to learn Chinese Calligraphy?

The answer to first question is that in order to learn Chinese calligraphy, having a good know how of Chinese language is not necessary however, the knowledge of Chinese culture is a requisite. This is because calligraphy is a substantial part of Chinese culture and if some one wants to acquire this outstanding skill of penmanship, he must possess plenty noesis about how calligraphy originated and how it evolved in each period of Chinese dynasty.

The answer to second question lies in the fact that calligraphy or the art of penmanship like any other form of art, cannot be learned overnight. Before actually starting how to design characters on the paper, one must thoroughly memorize the styles, methods and tools used; which is quite time consuming. This does not mean that you will be spending decades in building the foundation of calligraphy; if you consistently give a few hours to learning the basics, after three to four weeks time, you will be all geared up to actually start discovering the miracles of your handwriting. Websites based on the theme of learning calligraphy online can also help greatly in saving energy and time.

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