Today we all met in the Lotus office to learn calligraphy from a professor, I think he said, of Beijing University (or at least one of the colleges in the area). First, he gave us some background of calligraphy and where it came from. The oldest Chinese characters were inscribed on tortoise shells and animal hide something like, 4,000 years ago. Later, during the Han Dynasty (206BC to 220AD) calligraphy started to bloom as an art, and it has been a very important art in China ever since then.
The calligraphy professor showed us how to hold the maobi or paintbrush and then taught us how to make the different types of strokes that make up the characters. We practiced these and then practiced writing characters. Chinese calligraphy is very difficult because it requires lots of practice and lot of patience. It was hard but whenever someone wanted a break, a little doodle on the side of the page was welcome. The Professor himself showed some of his doodles…slightly better than ours of course.