Saturday, 29 December 2012

More Murasaki and Four Fonts

I thought it might be useful to show people how the same hanzi appears in 4 different font styles each progressively heavier.

No they're not as elegant as brush work but consider this how you can further modify those characters using color  gradient and  texture filters and plugins in Inkscape or Gimp or whichever program you use?

Thursday, 27 December 2012

Technozi Calendar

Technozi Fans Friends Visitors and Followers

Please Share My RED BUBBLE TECHNOZI CALENDAR and other Red Bubble art including Technozi cards and prints with others.

Here's some of the images you can see on that calendar and on the prints and cards.

Monday, 24 December 2012

Valuable Chun

Chun or Jun is the name of a famous Chinese glaze generally producing blues and areas of green red or purple depending on what clays and  slips its used over and whether or not you add a splash of copper pigment and the heat of the kiln too.

People like to romantize the glaze names n
but fond their actual meanings simply refer to their place of origin.

While you can hand build objects and vessels and use Chun glazes most Song dynasty Chun artifacts were wheel thrown bowls.

More about Chun in 2013

Friday, 21 December 2012

Beautiful Zi

I have a calendar featuring technozi designs up at

Red Bubble

I hope you'll visit soon and tell friends about.

Thank You

Sunday, 16 December 2012

Enjoy Xmas

I hope my readers are enjoying the leadup to Xmas and not finding it too stressful?

I was looking at my google stats and found to my surprise many readers come from South Korea or Indonesia but few from China or Japan.

Wherever you are logging in form I'ld love some comments?

Now who knows enuff about cursive forms to guess which character this is?

There's a clue in the title two clues if you considerI used the abbreviated form of Christmas and what its first letter is? Enjoy Xmas.

Thursday, 13 December 2012


Copyright Julie Vaux 2012

The only references I could find to Sinovietnamese or Vietnamese suggest the word is phien or thien  but didnt state whether the word is used for folding or flat round fans.

Folding fans were actually developed by the Japanese and didn't become popular in China unti the Ming  Dynasty.
Oogi is the folding fan in Japanese and uchiwa the round flat one.

In Modern Chinese a flat non folding fan is a ping shan and folding fans are zhe shan .

Monday, 10 December 2012

Water Kanji Modern Japanese Style

An excellent and beautiful example of modern design using traditional characters to create typographic art from Japan.

Monday, 3 December 2012

Jia Family

copyright julie vaux 2012  

I don't always add extra comments but I wanted to comment on what an extremely useful word this one is both as a noun and a suffix for word building.
The small seal script form shows people under a roof a household and somehow this has changed to also mean a household or lineage of skilled knowledgeable people, artists and schools or style of art in Japan.

If I was translating this word into Latin I would probably use familia from which English derives family because for the ancient Romans your familia was your entire extended household and connections.

Sunday, 25 November 2012

Yang Mei

There were and are female calligraphers of note like Yang Mei.

This calligraphic text on this fan was painted onto it by an empress of the southern song dynasty called YANG MEI.

Many cultures seem to acquire or develop the custom or restraint of women working with textiles or embroidery while men get to paint and write even when literacy and education is available.

In ancient China and other countries using writing systems based on Chinese characters even in scholarly and aristocratic families literacy tended to be limited to males.  The advent of printing and books make it easier for women to acquire literacy and study calligraphy from manuals and classic texts.

With cheaper editions being available daughters and sisters could study at home and not have to wait until the boys and men were finished with precious hand copied manuscripts kept in male studies.

Beautiful and elegant as this fan is we should remember it is also an artifact of an culture in which very few women had a chance to learn calligraphy skills or the choice of whether they would prefer to learn calligraphy or embroidery.

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

TEA CHA and Rainbow Cha!

Rainbow Cha Copyright J. Vaux 2012

This design is available on a variety of gifts including cups and teapots from

Cafepress      that's

Please SHARE this url with friends and family and remember I can share part of EVERY sale to LOCAL charities. Thank You

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Violet Gan

copyright julie vaux 2012

I couldnt find any Hakka or Min equivalents anyone know them?

Saturday, 10 November 2012

WU not

#unihan #wu #chinese #negative 
Copyright julie vaux 2012 and 2016 !

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N.B. Patreon Pledgers at a higher level will be eligible for an ebook I'm compiling of some of my prior technozi posts. Wanna pledge and suggest a topic?

Monday, 5 November 2012

Yao is Kiln

#unihan #ceramics #kiln #chinese #japanese

Copyright Julie Vaux 2012 and 2016 

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N.B. Patreon Pledgers at a higher level will be eligible for an ebook I'm compiling of some of my prior technozi posts. Wanna pledge and suggest a topic?

Saturday, 27 October 2012

Eroded Wei

"Negating" WEI with a Filter combo that produces an eroded effect.

ENJOY this and other Technozi experiments

Why not follow me?

Monday, 22 October 2012

Blue FEI

I seem to be one of the few people experimenting with adding Inkscape SVG filters to Hanzi?! What do you think of this one?

Saturday, 20 October 2012

Chinese Typographic design the stroke problem ... and solution?

Chinese Typographic Design
the Stroke Problem ...
is also the solution.

I've been reading a few recent blogs on chinese typography and thinking about the problems of designing and using a font for such a large character set.

SVG filters may be a solution of short sections of text and titles but ... did I just type SVG?

Calligraphy texts claim most chinese characters can be reduced to variants of 6 - 8 basic strokes.

You may have seen a diagram based on the YUNG character used to illustrate that claim?

Now what if Chinese text entry used a SVG based method of moving and joining a limited set of basic strokes into simple and  complicated characters. 

a Point click and drag with the  mouse or a finger or stylus method that could work on tablets phones or other computers?

Could Scaleable Vector Graphics be the answer?

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Golden Gao


Want to do a metallic effect? 

I applied Inkscape filters over a unihan generated svg.

You try it too!

Look up the unicode or unihan for a character then use text and control u 
with that character and once you have your svg add any filter you like!

Monday, 8 October 2012


#unihan #super #chinese #japanese #hanzi

Copyright 2016 Julie Vaux  

There's a question mark next to the Min entry cos I came across two conflicting entries. It may be that one form is Taiwanese Min  and the other Hokkien Amoy Min?

Anyway now you can say SUPER in several languages!

Support me via 


N.B. Patreon Pledgers at a higher level will be eligible for an ebook I'm compiling of some of my prior technozi posts. Wanna pledge and suggest a topic?

Friday, 5 October 2012

Purple Rainbow ZI

How did I get this image! READ ON!

Inkscape's latest version  includes three different rainbow effect filter!

Start by generating a SVG file by entering  the Unihan code for this or any other character using text and then control U type the code  and hit enter.

Got your SVG? Up to the filters menu and then down to textures.

You might also want to add drop shadow at a very low setting plus 1 or use stroke as well?

Saturday, 22 September 2012

More History Zi

Can you guess what Asian languages or Sinitic dialects the other words come from? Clues in the tags!

Thursday, 20 September 2012

The 3 History Jis

There are several words and characters for History in Chinese. 
Here's 3 of them that are very similar in sound although written with different characters.

What's the reason for this?
Bamboo Books! 

Well books made of long bamboo or wooden strips.

 Side bound paper books and scrolls of paper or silk were a later development.

Saturday, 15 September 2012

Playing with Red 3

SVG generated in Inkscape then imported as a PNG into GIMP.

Try this technique yourself! If it proves useful and you have more luck than me selling a design please consider coming back and using the paypal to tip me?

Thursday, 13 September 2012

Playing with Red 2

Another possible modification of Chi Aka .

If you havnt read the prior post I started out with a SVG generated using Unihan code entered in the Inkscape program using Control u plus the unihan plus enter.

I changed the stroke or outline to Orange and then added two filters.
The latest version on Inkscape has filters and plugins .
Now experiment yourself!

Monday, 10 September 2012

Playing with Red

I've been playing with Inkscape again.

In Inkscape you can generate a character by typing Control U plus the Unihan.

I did so with the character CHI aka RED

then I converted the object to paths so I could alter the nodes and shapes.

This needs another tweaking but you can see what I'm aiming for ?

A SVG that can be turned into a jpg or png or other format and look more like brush work. And there are other things you can do once you have the SVG generated. See the next post! and oh if like me you can't afford Illustrator chekc out Inkscape an OPEN SOURCE program.

Saturday, 8 September 2012

Mi Fu Calligraphy

Mi Fu was a famous Song dynasty painter but also a calligrapher.

If you've studied Chinese painting at all you've seen one of his landscapes composed of dots of rich dense dark ink .

He was also a noted calligrapher.

Here's a sample of his calligraphy to study.

Thursday, 6 September 2012

SINI When Chinese meets Arabic.

Arabic is usually written with a pen and sometimes with a brush.
The Hui Muslims of China had the cultural dilemma of using and respecting both Arabic script and Chinese characters. This lead to some interesting fusions of Arabic letters with Chinese style brush work known as Sini. Enjoy my selection.

Thursday, 30 August 2012

A Beijing Brush Stall

I was searching for brush images and found this.

Its a image of a stall selling Asian style brushes some where in Beijing.

Arent they beautiful?

If you know anything about this store please share!

Sunday, 26 August 2012

Li Shu and Ancient Books

Li Shu was a script that was engraved as well as painted on both paper and strips of wood or bamboo.

Here's proof.

The characters on the upper right is the modern regular script character forms.

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Big Brushes Image

Now this is a BIG BRUSH

Fortunately most brushes are more like this ...

If you've ever been in an art supplies store that has Asian brushes and wondered if those extra large ones are just for props no they do get used as the top image proves!

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Another Qing BLUE

I tried to get a color effect that shows various colors cos I'm planning a series on Chinese Color  adjectives blue green red etc. Coming soon!

Saturday, 4 August 2012

Beautiful LI

Another character using the Deer radical is LI. some scholars claim the top part of the character which is the basis for the modern simplified form shows horns with beads between them. Others say its just the horns. I suspect its horns since the first signs of  deer visiting your fields to help themselves to one's crops for an irate farmer would have been horns towering over wheat or millet?

Yes venison!  beautiful and tasty for a hungry farmer!? Perhaps?

Another thought? I wonder if deer horns were ever used for beads and jewellery?

Enjoy using the character image even if you don't like or agree with my speculations?

Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Deer Radical 198

I think this radical reminds us there was a time when deer were abundant in China when the majority of mountains and hills were forested and the deer wandered into the lowlands. There's another character using this radical that means the land around the bottom of hills and mountains probably open woodlands  as it shows two trees over the deer radical and then there's the Hanzi for dust which is deer leaving dust in their trail. This is lot more obvious in the seal script forms which show the horns and the lower part are much more legs.

Every character has a story!

Friday, 20 July 2012

Shino Story

What does #dwarf #bamboo and #Shino a type of Japanese Glaze and ceramic style have to do with each other?

Read on but first ... a couple of pictures you need to see

Sasa or "dwarf" bamboo

There's this story repeated in several books and articles that Shino was named after a tea master called Shino Soshin and certainly MODE|RN Japanese uses the characters of his name to write SHINO b u u u t I think the word has an older origin in another word with the same pronunciation and I suspect some one thought writing it with two characters looked more "posh"?

Shino as a ceramics and glaze PREDATES Shino Soshin.

One of the favorite design motifs on early Momoyama Shino is a little sketch in iron slip of a plant.

Okay this is probably grass but you get my point?

I think Shino get its name from a design motif

I can see a conversation like this occurring in 17th century Kyoto at a ceramics shop.

NO honorable customer that is karatsu ware this is from Mino the Shino and Oribe ware. See Shino?

It's possible?

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