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I flamed amazement…

David McGrail
Class Full
  • 5 days
  • Intermediate/Advanced
  • EN

With impish fervour, we will 'flame amazement' with the passion of Ariel creating the lightning storm in William Shakespeare's 'The Tempest'

Part 1: The Cursive Stroke – developing confidence and control

Beginning with expressive, gestural arabesques, we will broaden out to develop those marks to achieve character, capturing the vitality and exuberance of the cursive stroke. Exquisite pieces will be achieved through the use of delicate tones, fine shifts and balances, rare accents of gold, silver etc. and watercolours blended with iridescent and metallic powders. We will use incised strokes and incorporate them into compositions, dealing with harmony, spatial relationships and contrast.

Part 2: Creating works of exceptional beauty–arresting and engaging the viewer

You will learn how to inject a refined aesthetic sensibility into your calligraphic works. In drawing on the fundamentals of Japanese aesthetics, we acknowledge its significant contribution to contemporary design. The beauty of a simple, unadorned piece of calligraphy is evident. But it is in the juxtaposition of elements where a work becomes truly interesting and transcends beyond the level of craft. In a series of modules, you will create harmonious pieces, using subtle masking techniques and graphic elements that will enrich both your work and the pleasure you get from doing it.

Supply List

All your usual standard calligraphic supplies: pens, range of nibs, ruling pen, ruler etc., include 2 or 3 large automatic pens and the items listed below.


  • 25 sheets, approximate size 11” x 17”, of each of the following:
  • For pen work, a plain, smooth drawing paper about 80 lbs weight
  • For acrylic and painterly work, similar smooth plain paper but about 135 lbs weight.
  • One A4 pad of matt black paper for pen work about 160/180 gsm
  • Two sheets of hot pressed (smooth) watercolour paper, something like Saunders or Fabriano, cut to approximate size 11” x 17”


  • 1 Schmincke Horadam (or similar) watercolour half pan of gold
  • 1 Schmincke Horadam (or similar) watercolour half pan of silver or they can be purchased in tube format 5ml
  • Small selection of watercolours in tubes or pans about 6 colours


  • Small jar (about 8 fl oz) of white Gesso
  • Small jar (about 8 fl oz) of black Gesso these can be shared as we will only need a little


  • Small selection of colours, include a metallic gold or silver

Imitation Gold Powders:

  • Small pot of fine imitation gold metallic powder


  • ½ inch flat brush
  • 1 inch flat brush
  • 2 inch fine synthetic flat brush not expensive, something near these sizes will be fine
  • A couple of small watercolour brushes synthetic is fine


  • Small bottle of black ink, preferably sumi

Scalpel & Cutting Mat:

  • Metal scalpel (like Swann Morton) and a packet of five 10A scalpel blades
  • A4 cutting mat
  • It is essential that each person brings a metal scalpel or similar knife for fine cutting work as well as a A4 size cutting mat.

Other Items:

  • White ceramic dish or similar for mixing watercolour paints
  • Small metal palette knife
  • Two glossy colour magazines with plenty of large photographs of house interiors, fabrics, architecture etc.

Essential Item:

  • 1 roll of Scotch 3M removable transparent tape (This is a clear tape that can be easily removed. It comes in a blue packet –small size is fine)
Supply Fee $0.00
Class Full