Wednesday, March 14, 2012


Susan written by © Anwa of OFAS
I have wanted to learn Arabic calligraphy for a long time now. I think it is beautiful as an art form in both traditional and modern art. One of the best exhibitions I've been to in the last few years was a Sotherby's pre-sale exhibition featuring Early Islamic, Ottoman and Contemporary calligraphic art in Doha December 2010. My first attempt was in February, and was posted on my facebook page, trying to copy a whole phrase Knowledge is Enlightenment.
First attempts by ©Sue Pownall Feb 2012
Whilst my membership application for the Oman Fine Art Society has only just been submitted (fingers & toes crossed for acceptance), twice I've been able to sit with their calligraphic group when they meet to practise and get guidance from more experienced members. The first time I was there, Anwa wrote my name as a gift (above) and it is now on my inspiration board.
Talk at calligraphy group OFAS ©Sue Pownall
Impatient to run before I can walk I am finding repetition of my A, B, Cs (actually alaf, baa', taa') a struggle especially last night, my 2nd evening, when 2 men gave talks to the group in Arabic. Due to the talks there was not the interaction between the group members as they listened and I was left to keep repeating my letters. Consequently I started sketching, including sketching the letters on the chalk board.

Sketching takes over my pratice ©Sue Pownall
Before I left, Anwa took my notebook, I thought to check my letters, and showed my sketches to the other girls and there was a lot of giggling as they recognised the people. She then told me to practise everyday.  hmm that's as likely as my studying 3 times a week.

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