The Art of Calligraphy
I was born and bred in a beautiful little town named Merthyr Tydfil, therefore my commitment will always be here as my future plans are to give something back to the community I grew up in. Professionally my background is local government, education and training and for the last 9 years has been supportive of the local housing, community, homes, and places whilst working with and for a local housing association as a project officer.
I have always had a creative side from a young age where my dad taught me to draw, and my grandmother introduced me to the world of arts and crafts. These skills were present even more so throughout my school life but weren’t something I made time for until having my own children, which reigning love for art again in 2012.
As a result of lockdowns, my need for art had grown more than ever as it gave me a mental focus and positive expressive outlet.
My work is a combination of digital design, monoline, brush lettering, modern calligraphy, copperplate and watercolour painting. I am brand new to the occasion stationery industry, so being able to bring in a variety of art through hand lettering and watercolour painting allows me to constantly explore new imagery and lettering techniques creating unique occasion cards and gifts and delivery of workshops locally.
Calligraphy gives me an opportunity to have a regular creative outlet, with watercolour painting having the same effect very much. Both these activities are my little escape from a chaotic world and have such a relaxing impact and calming effect on me, it lets me find some balance to support my overall wellbeing. When practising calligraphy and watercolour painting you must slow down, focus, and breathe, so it’s such a great tool if you ever feel frustrated or overwhelmed it helps you to completely express any anxious thoughts and feelings into creating something.
By linking art to a number of themes supportive of the 5 ways to wellbeing;
- Using your creative skills to enhance self-worth and sharing positive experiences with others allowing you to connect to and support others
- Raising your self-esteem and positivity which supports mood
- Learning a new skill boosting self-confidence and build a sense of purpose again helping you to connect with like-minded people
- Small acts of kindness by using your creativity skills to create a gift, volunteer etc..
- Mindfulness helping you to pay more attention to the present moment
The best part about being creative is having the opportunities it will bring not only for me personally but because I get to share my creative skills with the local community. The joy of calligraphy and watercolour painting is that you don’t need to have neat handwriting or have an artistic flair to learn these skills, once you know the techniques you can create away until your heart’s content!
In times of lockdown, it’s become even more popular, as people look for crafts to help get them off their screens by investing in calligraphy kits to practice from the comfort of their own homes. Flexing our creative muscles is proven to help improve and maintain good mental health and wellbeing, specifically calligraphy supporting muscle memory. I would encourage those who are looking for a relaxing practice to try calligraphy out, as it’s both creative and therapeutic at the same time.
Overall Calligraphy and painting has enhanced my wellbeing toolkit with its mindful effects supporting my own mental health and essential pillars of improving my happiness.