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Dear Arrighi,

I've taken some calligraphy classes and I'm still not as good as I think I should be, after I've been writing the alphabet since kindergarten, how come I can't do this?

Signed,
Slower than I thought

Dear Slower,

I wonder if you would be asking this question if you were taking piano lessons or a foreign language? (You have been speaking since you were a year old but it doesn't help much when you're learning another language). Just because you learned handwriting in Kindergarten and have been writing ever since doesn't mean that calligraphy will be learned effortlessly and in no time. It's drawing letters to begin with and must be taken slowly and meticulously if you want to have a good foundation in letterforms. Besides I think its enjoyable to "Just Do It" It can be very meditative if you let it be. Relax and Enjoy the Process. Someday when you feel really satisfied with your calligraphy. (I'm still waiting for that day) you'll realize that it isn't the end result that was the best part, it was the journey. I have flat flies filed with finished pieces, so it wasn't that I had room on my walls at home to fill but that I just liked expressing my creativity through calligraphy and the related arts. The friends and colleagues I've made through calligrapy is far more important than whether I make a perfect letter or learn very quickly.

Another suggestion is to be sure and find good teachers. Ones who are commiitted to teaching the basics well. Listen to them and do your homework. Anything worth doing will take study and practice. But in a relatively short time you will be doing some really nice stuff and will probably surprise yourself! Give yourself time to do this, it's one of those things that FILLS YOUR CUP instead of draining your energy.

Signed,

Arrighi

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