Q&A with Joy Deneen for Rendez-vous 2019

I’m not much of a “being in the spotlight” type of person, but I sure talked a lot about how much I love calligraphy and attending conferences in this Q&A!  Thanks to Joy for reaching put and Vichana for the ASOH photos. I look forward to seeing all my calligra-friends and teachers at Rendez-vous 2019!

Read the Q&A here: https://rendezvouscalligraphy.org/en/blog/why-i-attend-the-international-calligraphy-conference

The Most Clever Woman

I tend to be most productive when there is an event or goal on the horizon. This piece, along with about 50 works by members (ranging from students to masters) of the Society for Calligraphy, is currently on display at the Bowers Museum in Santa Ana. “East Meets West: an Expression of Culture” runs from today to Sunday, February 4th, and compliments the current exhibit on the Empress Dowager Cixi at Bowers.

This piece was inspired by one of the empress dowager’s many paintings and cites one of her quotes, which I feel really sums up her influence on China and also the world. She was a formidable and controversial figure. I learned so much from reading “Empress Dowager Cixi: The Concubine Who Launched Modern China,” by author Jung Chang. Thanks to everyone, especially Jenny Allen who worked so hard to make this exhibit happen!

Watercolor, gouache, and walnut ink on 90 lb Arches hot press, 12″x 16″.

Sweet Violet

Finally got some time to finish up and trim my violet piece, which will be available as part of the Art Mosaic auction at Letters California Style 2018 (Feb. 16-19) in less than three weeks! The proceeds will go to Society for Calligraphy. I had so much fun working on this piece and I hope it will go to a good home.

This was a really fun project – the theme of the Art Mosaic auction this year is “Flora, Fauna, and Letters,” and while I was doing research, I came across the fact that February’s birth flower is the violet. I figured it would be perfect for Letters California Style which will be in mid-February.

Materials used: Watercolor, gouache, and walnut ink on 140 lb Arches hot press, using sz 0 brush, pointed pen and .75mm broadedge nib. Size: 8″x 8″.

Letters California Style 2017

Over Presidents’ Day weekend, I had the best time at Letters California Style, the member’s conference that takes place every year on that weekend, organized by Society for Calligraphy in Southern California. This year I was in Robbie Saslow‘s class, “Fabulous and Functional: The Art of Certificates and Scrolls,” along with nine other calligraphers from California, Texas, Nevada, and Washington State. We all enjoyed learning from Robbie who shared wonderful stories, knowledge, and great tips! He was such a fantastic instructor.

Robbie doing a class demo.

Our first class assignment was to create a certificate, picking one out of three choices with different criteria and styles. Most in the class opted for a certificate for the “Golden Poppy Society of Southern California” (a fictitious organization). We sketched drafts and worked on our designs with Robbie’s guidance for the first two days:

Snap shots from class: Robbie doing a demo and shared his beautiful work for the Los Angeles County; beautiful certificates done by Schin Loong, Diane Reiter, Kathy Barker, and Cindy Haller.

I ended up choosing a baby name certificate, which had the requirement of: baby name should be prominent, with a style that is casual, playful but clean, no pink, and must have three cats. I felt it was the most comfortable for me to dive into!

Rough draft of my certificate.

Needless to say, I had a lot of fun with this one, using pointed pen styles, sketching cats, lettering with colored pencils and using green with FineTec gold!

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Pick Your Own Battles

I know I am not alone when I say that recent news have left me feeling sad and hopeless. But we must keep trying, because we must have hope, for there are so many things to fight for. We obviously cannot fight for all, so we must pick and choose our own battles.

I choose to fight for our wilderness, our national parks, and our environment.

After hearing about the rogue national park rangers in the news, I got inspired to follow them as well as alt-NASA on Twitter. I have always been a liberal, and have always voted. But this time, voting was not enough. Following the rogue scientists’ lead, I decided to write all 42 members of the House Committee on Natural Resources, urging them to protect our wilderness, protect our public lands and national parks.

25 Republicans and 17 Democrats. From coast to coast, all going to hear from me, and getting a John Muir quote. This is how a calligrapher resists.

A Sharp Pencil and a Keen Eye

Last weekend, I spent the weekend in San Diego learning from Amity Parks! I was really sad to have missed the opportunity to learn from her last year, so I was glad that San Diego Fellow Calligraphers invited her to teach her workshop A Sharp Pencil and a Keen Eye, and they had an opening!

The last time I visited San Diego was in 2013 for Pat Blair’s Copperplate workshop, and I really enjoyed the experience. SDFC’s classroom space is big and open, and everyone was so kind and welcoming.

Amity demos for our class

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The Passionate Pointed Brush

Julie Wildman (left) speaks to the class

I attended a wonderful Society for Calligraphy workshop over the weekend – The Passionate Pointed Brush with Julie Wildman who was visiting us from Chicago! Julie has been working as a designer and artist for over 25 years.

The class took place on the campus of Cal State Long Beach. The classroom was nice and big, and we had so much room on big work tables!

My practice sheet, with name tag lettered by Julie

I have always loved the pointed brush. It’s definitely quite challenging because it is so different from using a steel nib. Julie shared some great exemplars with us, including her own, as well as work from pointed brush master calligraphers such as John Stevens, Yves Leterme, and Carl Rohrs. She also showed us letterform variations, such as the different ways to do each letter. I loved watching her do demo – she has such great control of the pointed brush and has such a light touch.

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A Show of Hands 2016

North Carolina hospitality

I just spent a week at A Show of Hands, the 2016 International Calligraphy Conference, and I had one of the most fun calligraphy experiences ever.

This was my first time in North Carolina, and the town of Asheville was just so beautiful and green. I got an AirBnB off-campus with five other calligraphy friends, and we had the best time hanging out, attending classes, and learning in a wonderful atmosphere. The conference took place on the campus of Warren Wilson College which had beautiful grounds, with blooming flowers in the midst of summer.

 

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