Asian Art Gallery

Adventures in Asian Art



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Our Options for Custom Chinese and Japanese Calligraphy

Now with more than 262,828,800 possible combinations of custom Chinese and Japanese calligraphy artwork!
3,042 phrases, words, and names X 4+ mounting options X 2 for gold sub-border option X 9 character styles X 8 silk colors X 25 paper colors X 3 sizes X 2 master calligrapher options.
(Counting options from our Chinese and Japanese master calligraphers only -- 219,024 combinations are also available with our more economical standard calligraphy)

See actual samples of real scrolls here.

Please note that below are the listings for every possible option available with our master calligrapher. Standard calligraphy options are limited to xing-kaishu style characters, 6 different papers, and 3 different colors of silk with no larger size options.

Standard calligraphy options are highlighted with a red border below.

Mounting Format

Most people prefer a vertical wall scroll, but we also offer other options.

Width: 19¼" - 20½"
(49cm-52cm)
measured at the wooden knobs.

Length varies depending
on number of characters.

vertical wall scroll
Vertical Wall Scroll

Width: 17" (43cm)

Length varies depending
on number of characters.

Expect 2-4 feet
(60cm - 120cm)

This option reduces
your cost by US$13.00

Vertical Chinese Calligraphy Painting
Vertical Portrait

Overall height: 17" (43cm)

Width varies depending
on number of characters.

Expect 2-4 feet (60cm - 120cm)

This option reduces
your cost by US$13.00

Horizontal Chinese Calligraphy Painting
Horizontal Portrait

Overall height: 17" (43cm)

Width varies depending
on number of characters.

Expect 4-6 feet (120cm - 182cm)

Horizontal Chinese Calligraphy Wall Scroll
Horizontal Wall Scroll

Keep in mind that if you choose one of the portrait options, you will need to frame this artwork after it arrives at your home. To avoid the cost of framing, we strongly suggest choosing a wall scroll.

Aspect of the Xuan Paper (Rice Paper) Panel:

For Single-Character Selections Only

For single-character calligraphy, you can either have a square or rectangular aspect.

No price difference.

Rectangular Aspect

With this option, the calligrapher will use a longer piece of paper, stretch the character vertically, and probably write an inscription related to the artwork. The inscription may say "Written in Beijing in 2007" in Chinese along with the calligrapher's signature.

Rectangle / Long Aspect

Square Aspect

Keeping it square like this looks good on a wall scroll, and is often desirable for a portrait.

Square / Short Aspect

Add an Inscription? ($9 extra)

You can add an inscription such as your names (for couples or families) or a special wish or salutation. We'll transliterate your names or translate your phrase into Mandarin Chinese (Japanese is available only if you select our Japanese Master Calligrapher) and have the calligrapher add it to your artwork.

Please try to make your inscription one clear and complete thought or sentence (with subject, verb, and object) or a couple names arranged like "Dick and Jane Forever".
Try to avoid making "word lists", as they are not natural in Chinese language and grammar.


You get to choose one of the two natural options for locating your inscription:

None

No charge

Vertically, on the side next to the main characters.
Note: This looks best with selections that have multiple characters.


$9.00 Extra

Inscription at Left

Below the main characters (on the bottom)
Note: This looks best with selections that have one or maybe two main characters.


$9.00 Extra

Inscription at Bottom

When you order, a box will appear where you can type your inscription.

Choose Your Calligraphy Style...

Xing-Kaishu is the most popular style, but if you are a calligraphy connoisseur and are looking other character styles, Xing An-Ping can take care of you...
Below are sample images of actual calligraphy in these 9 styles.

Zhuanshu
"Ancient Seal Script"

Real Zhuanshu Calligraphy

This is the oldest known form of Chinese characters that can be traced to the current lexicon.

They date back to the Western Zhou Dynasty
(827-782 B.C.)

Fang-Zhuanshu
"Square Seal Script"

Real Square-Zhuanshu Calligraphy

This is a special wider and more square form of ancient zhuanshu characters.

These characters are very similar to those seen on square stone chops (stamping seals) in China, Japan, and Korea.

Lishu
"Official Script"

Real Lishu Calligraphy

This style dates back to the
Qin Dynasty
(221-207 B.C.)

Lishu was the bridge leading from zhuanshu to kaishu styles.

Personal Lishu
"Personal Official Script"

Peronsonal-Style Lishu Calligraphy

This is
Master Calligrapher
Xing An-Ping's
personal style of Lishu that he has developed.

It's kind of his "signature style".

Note: Chinese and Japanese audiences will generally have a greater appreciation for this style than westerners.

Kaishu
"Regular Script"

Real Kaishu Calligraphy

Kaishu is the standard way to write the modern Chinese lexicon. These characters have been used for the past 2000 years in China. This is also the form of Chinese characters absorbed by the Japanese language during the 5th century, and even earlier in Korea. This is the most universally-recognized Chinese character style.

Xing-Kaishu
"Running Kaishu"

Real Xingkai Calligraphy

Based on kaishu characters, but written with a more free-flowing hand.

Most Popular

Xingshu
"Running Script"

Real Xingshu Calligraphy

Some people call this "cursive" Chinese.

The strokes of this style often "flow" into the next. This leaves lots of "brush tails" at the end of the strokes.

Xing-Caoshu
"Running Cursive Script"

Real Xingcaoshu Calligraphy

This is half-way between xingshu and caoshu.

The characters are wild and flowing, but are still recognizable.

Lots of energy and art goes into this style.

Caoshu
"Cursive Chaos Style"

Real Caoshu Calligraphy

There is another style that you can request, but only if you know what it is.

It can not be easily defined, and is often misunderstood by western audiences.

No two calligraphers write Caoshu in the same way, and even with the same calligraphers, this chaos-style calligraphy is different every time.

More about Japanese/Chinese calligraphy styles: "Kai Shu", "Li Shu", "Xing Shu" etc.

Silk colors...

Please note that all computer monitors display colors differently. This is especially true of the white and ivory silks shown below. In real life, the white is pure white, and the ivory has a warm yellow hue - some would call this "antique white".
What you see on your screen now, may vary from how these colors look in real life. Please allow for this, as well as variations in shade and pattern that happen from time to time as we receive new batches of silk cloth from the mill.

White

Ivory

Frost Blue

Frost Green

Gold

Med. Green

Plain White

Flat Black

Xuan paper colors...

Premium xuan paper with gold flakes

These gold flakes are not the first thing you notice on a calligraphy wall scroll, but they add something special to the artwork.
High-quality calligraphy is often seen on this quality paper. Especially good for gifts.

Don't let these images or your computer monitor fool you, these gold-flake papers are more subtle than they appear on your computer screen, and look great in real life (just really hard to accurately photograph)

Beige

Tan

Red

Pink

Yellow Hue

Light Blue

Special handmade papers

While technically, all xuan paper is handmade, these are special.
During the paper-making process, the pulp is not so finely strained which leaves more coarse fibers in the finished product.
The result: More natural colors come through to give this paper a very interesting look.

Natural Fiber

Hand Laid Natural

Hair-like Fiber

Pattern-Stampings

These xuan papers are imprinted or etched with various gold or ink patterns. The stampings make a wonderful background that enhances the presentation without "stealing the show" from the calligraphy itself.

Red

Gold Stampings

Red

Gold Dragon & Phoenix Etching

Light Tan

Gold Dragons Etching

Tan

Brown Printed Stampings

Tan

Water-ink stampings

Yellow Hue

Water-ink Stampings

Light Blue

Water-ink Stampings

Notes about stamped and etched papers...

All of these stamped papers are available for regular-sized vertical wall scrolls & portraits.
Availability is hit-or-miss for large, jumbo, and horizontal formats.
If you choose any of these papers for a large, jumbo, or horizontal piece, please expect a slight delay as we try to "special order" your paper. If we can't find it, we may have to contact you to discuss other options.

Other special papers

Orange

Gold Sparkle Pattern

Blue

Gold Sparkle Pattern

Off-white

Watermark Pattern

Plain papers

No gold flakes, no stampings, and no fiber or special treatments

White

Tan

Red

Orange

Pink

Yellow
Hue

Light
Blue

Number of Columns

Please Note:

This option only applies to calligraphy with 5-8 characters.

There is no price difference!

If you have more than 6 feet of wall space, you may want to choose a single column.

If you have limited space, choose the 2 column option because it will yield a shorter scroll.

Single Column

signature
&#shen1;&#jiao4;&#sheng4;&#yu2;&#yan2;&#jiao4;

2 Columns

signature
&#shen1;&#jiao4;&#sheng4;&#yu2;&#yan2;&#jiao4;

Note: For selections with 12-30 characters, there is a choice between 2 and 3 columns.

Size of your Calligraphy

Regular
(most popular option)

Large
($19 extra)

Jumbo
($39 extra)

Jumbo Scroll with single-column of 6 characters

If you choose the large or jumbo size for 4 or more characters arranged in a single column, it will have extra space on either side of the column, like the image shown to the right. Please be sure this is what you want, before you select "large" or "jumbo" sizes.

What these sizes mean...

 

Regular

Large

Jumbo

Width of scroll at wooden knobs
wall scroll width

19¼" - 20½"
(49cm-52cm)

26" - 27"
(66cm - 69cm)

31" - 33"
(78cm - 84cm)

Length
of
Scroll

wall scroll length

1 Character

3' (90cm)

3½'+ (108cm)

5' (153cm)

2 Characters

3¾' (112cm)

5' (152cm)

6' (183cm)

3 Characters

4¼'+ (137cm)

6¼' (192cm)

6¼' (192cm)

4 Characters

5' (152cm)

6¼' (192cm)

6¼' (192cm)

5-6 Characters
(1 column)

6' (183cm)

6¼' (192cm)

6¼' (192cm)

5 Characters
(2 columns)

N/A

4¼' (128cm)

5'+ (154cm)

6 Characters
(2 columns)

Almost 4'
(116cm)

4¼' (128cm)

5'+ (154cm)

7-8 Characters
(2 columns)

4¼' (130cm)

5' (152cm)

6' (183cm)

9-10 Characters
(2 columns)

Almost 5'
(147cm)

5½'+ (172cm)

6¼' (192cm)

Please consider all measurements above to be approximate.

Sizes to vary from scroll to scroll because these are completely handmade, custom for you.

The measurements above apply to vertical wall scrolls - feel free to select "large" and "jumbo" sizes for portraits or horizontal wall scrolls, as they can increase in size by the same proportions.
Notes: If you select a vertical portrait instead of a wall scroll, it will be about 22¼" (56cm) less in height, and because they don't have knobs, it will be about 3¾" (9cm) less in width compared to measurements shown for wall scrolls.
If you order a horizontal scroll or portrait, just rotate the measurements (width becomes length etc.). However, multi-column horizontal pieces will vary a lot.