Veronica Halim

The Beginnings of Calligraphy Styling

Calligraphy Styling Book

Finally being able to hold the printed copy of Calligraphy Styling in my hands was one of the greatest feelings ever! With its beautiful paper and colors, the book is the reward of a 6 month long process of curating, creating and shooting a variety of calligraphy projects.

When an editor who had been helping me organize my workshops in Japan initially approached me last year with the idea of writing a book for the Japanese market, it seemed like a daunting idea at first. Up until then, I had thought of calligraphy books as very serious projects undertaken by master penmen. The editor, however, suggested a more lifestyle approach to the book, after noticing that the participants of my workshops really enjoyed and were inspired by my calligraphic style. After some more encouragement and suggestions from her, I accepted the offer. She then brought the idea to Shufunotomo, one of the largest publishers in Japan, who loved the concept and agreed to publish the book.

Weeks of brainstorming and planning followed – back and forth emails and phone calls with my editors and coordinating with the team in Japan. One of the biggest challenges was deciding what to include in the book! I wanted readers to feel that calligraphy is both fun and useful by showing a broad range of applications.

Photo courtesy of Wiki Lee

Veronica reading Calligraphy Styling
Photo courtesy of Wiki Lee

I envisioned the book to be an accessible step-by-step guide book that would inspire readers to apply their calligraphy skills with other things in their lives. Quite a number of the participants in my workshops are small business owners, so that spurred me to create the book in such a way that they can combine it with their chosen industry. For example, florists could work calligraphy into their floral wrappings, cafe owners and small batch homemade jam makers can incorporate it into their product packaging.

In the end, over 70 different artworks and styling made it into the book, including ideas on how to throw a small gathering with friends and brighten up the table setting with touches of calligraphy. Despite initially being a little nervous about creating the book, I am extremely grateful to have experienced working with the Japanese team to create something that can inspire people to bring the beauty of calligraphy into their daily lives.

Calligraphy Styling is available online through from Amazon Japan. You can also find the book at bookstores around Japan and Kinokuniya Indonesia.

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