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Ugly Maki-E Kanji/chinese Characters On Nakaya Pens?


Marino
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I'm certainly no expert on the world of maki-e pens, but I do make a point of looking at them, just to appreciate the designs. I think I've only ever seen one pen that had calligraphy as a focus of the design. I can't remember where I saw it. If that's really important to you, you could ask people like John Mottishaw or Bryant Greer or people at Namiki if they know of any such examples, so you could identify an artisan to make a pen around a certain phrase. But I think it would cost you $$$.

These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; he that stands it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives everything its value.--Thomas Paine, "The American Crisis", 1776

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These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; he that stands it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives everything its value.--Thomas Paine, "The American Crisis", 1776

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To my relatively untrained eyes (know more of Chinese than Japanese styles of calligraphy) that one is quite nice.

 

I kind of agree that the original pen under discussion has rather basic and simple calligraphy. But that may be a matter of taste. As an earlier poster pointed out, the aesthetic expressed by Wabi emphasizes the simple, the spontaneous and painfully beautiful unrefined. I do remember seeing scrolls for the tokanoma of a tea house (the central foci for Wabi) as being in both grass style, if you're trying for the "casual" country retreat aesthetic, or in more of a blocky clerical style meant to evoke thoughts of a scholarly retirement.

 

I agree the characters could have been executed with more style. They're simple, without much modulation or interest. But I don't think they're executed poorly. At least they're significantly better than the tattoos. :D

 

“When the historians of education do equal and exact justice to all who have contributed toward educational progress, they will devote several pages to those revolutionists who invented steel pens and blackboards.” V.T. Thayer, 1928

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"No one is exempt from talking nonsense; the mistake is to do it solemnly."

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I suppose were talking about the pen and not the tattoo... :)

I sent them the characters but they said they could only write as it is displayed on their website. Other style needs to add 200.

Im curious now. You mean to say you don't like the way your characters came out ?

Actually, I was referring to handwriting. Sorry for the confusion!

"In this world... you must be oh, so smart, or oh, so pleasant. Well for years I was smart. I recommend pleasant."

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Actually, it's still better than the writing I have on my one and only Japanese urushi pen.

 

It's a pre-war or wartime Morison (one "r" Japanese company) in very plain brown urushi. Someone scratched something into the barrel.

 

My Japanese is not nearly as good as my Chinese, so if anyone can translate it while hopefully making the original poster feel better about the calligraphy on his pen, I'd appreciate it. Feel free to PM me rather than hijack this thread.

 

fpn_1432864601__fullsizerender.jpg

 

“When the historians of education do equal and exact justice to all who have contributed toward educational progress, they will devote several pages to those revolutionists who invented steel pens and blackboards.” V.T. Thayer, 1928

Check out my Steel Pen Blog

"No one is exempt from talking nonsense; the mistake is to do it solemnly."

-Montaigne

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I suppose the characters on your pen is former owner's name.

 

 

文珠 湊一 "Monju Souichi" ?

 

Third character may not be correct.

 

 

And, the first character of the tattoo is printed upside-down.

 

"苦" -ku- is the character, which means pain, suffering, hardness etc.

 

"阿呆" -aho- is a popular word for "fool" or "idiot".

 

I don't know why they came to mean "Man of freedom".

Perhaps a fool who don't care anything is free from everything.

 

 

 

Sorry I know almost nothing about Maki-e pens, so I only mentioned about Chinese characters.

 

regards,

Edited by TorPelikan
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Marino- are you going to write with your Nakaya pen or are you going to just loook at the pen? What does it matter whether the tiny kanji is beautiful or not? You are asking a question about something most FPN members dont give a F*** about. We are more interested about whether the pen writes well. You are barking up the wrong tree.

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Wolverine, for a hand-painted pen where he decoration is 90% of the value, it does make a difference. And for cultures like Japan and China, calligraphy is a high art and how one writes can be at least as important as what one writes in certain circumstances.

 

If this was a $1.00 Hero with bad hand painting on it, then the expectation is much lower. It's not, so it matters.

 

“When the historians of education do equal and exact justice to all who have contributed toward educational progress, they will devote several pages to those revolutionists who invented steel pens and blackboards.” V.T. Thayer, 1928

Check out my Steel Pen Blog

"No one is exempt from talking nonsense; the mistake is to do it solemnly."

-Montaigne

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Details DO matter. At least for me.

 

I thinnk this topic is worth wile to discuss about. I'm interested. :)

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Too bad someone already translated Andrew's Kanji. I was going to have some real fun. "Man with tiny ______" Oh well!

"In this world... you must be oh, so smart, or oh, so pleasant. Well for years I was smart. I recommend pleasant."

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Marino- are you going to write with your Nakaya pen or are you going to just loook at the pen? What does it matter whether the tiny kanji is beautiful or not? You are asking a question about something most FPN members dont give a F*** about. We are more interested about whether the pen writes well. You are barking up the wrong tree.

Thank you for you input, Wolerine1.

 

To answer your question, even though it was a rhetorical one, I am going to write with it and I am going to stare at it (although I would much prefer to use the word "admire"). Why the kanji mattes shouldn't be, I think, very important, for the answer is highly subjective. However, in the same sense, why does it matter if it is urushi coated or not? Why does it matter if the urushi is red or black? Why does it matter if the urushi finish is beautiful or not? It matters for the person buying the pen and this should, I believe,, be enough in itself.

 

Your point about FPN members being concerned only if a pen writes well is interesting. I thought that a pleasant experience of writing with a fountain pen had other components to it rather than just how the pen writes. Since I'm not "We" (as you put it), but rather just myself, all I can tell you is that the writing experience I get out of a fountain pen has much to do with the aesthetics of the pen. So, yes, it matters if the Kanji are beautiful for me.

 

Anyhow, thanks for the input.

Edited by Marino
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Details DO matter. At least for me.

I thinnk this topic is worth wile to discuss about. I'm interested. :)

+1.

:)

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Wolverine, for a hand-painted pen where he decoration is 90% of the value, it does make a difference. And for cultures like Japan and China, calligraphy is a high art and how one writes can be at least as important as what one writes in certain circumstances.

If this was a $1.00 Hero with bad hand painting on it, then the expectation is much lower. It's not, so it matters.

Well said. Well said.

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Good idea. I'll ask him and see what he says.

 

I did this a few years ago. I like Ernest's calligraphy. More importantly, i didn't want to wait six months for the customized Nakaya.

 

I do like Nakaya's kanji on my other pens - it is simple and discreet - but I also very much like Ernest's style. It took him between four and six weeks, as I recall. Not nearly six months.

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Fleekair <--French accent.

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I too find this an interesting and worthy topic of discussion. Some of us are even interested in and can read the script in question. What if one of us ordered a pen engraved with, say, her name in Roman letters and the script came back in a childish scrawl? That would be a problem, no?

 

For the record, the handwriting on this Nakaya looks fine to me. Admittedly, it is unremarkable, but it is not bad.

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Here are two very nice examples from Danitrio:

 

https://www.flickr.com/photos/7953903@N03/7848863324/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/7953903@N03/7848867328/

 

They all look better than Nakaya in my opinion. Could it be that Danitrio has better artists, or perhaps that it cares more about details?

 

Agreed. They are much nicer. I would imagine it is a matter of the individual writer. I don't know that I would say that Nakaya doesn't care so much about details.

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Agreed. They are much nicer. I would imagine it is a matter of the individual writer. I don't know that I would say that Nakaya doesn't care so much about details.

Yes, not that they wouldn't care much about details, just that it appears that (at least taking into consideration these samples) Danitrio might care more. I say this because , as you said, the artist working for Danitrio here seems much more skilled, and this could mean only two things I think: either Danitrio got lucky and, by chance, hired a better artist or they really made a point of having highly skilled people taking care of their Kanji/characters.

 

实在很漂亮!

Edited by Marino
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They all look better than Nakaya in my opinion. Could it be that Danitrio has better artists, or perhaps that it cares more about details?

Oh yea, both of them look nicer than Nakaya's.

 

(You get what you pay for...?)

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