Hand Painted
Ships from: USA

 This artwork is
100% hand-painted.

Typical Gallery Price: $40.00

Your Price: $16.88

DRAGON Chinese Calligraphy Portrait

DRAGON Chinese Calligraphy Portrait
DRAGON Chinese Calligraphy Portrait
See how "DRAGON Chinese Calligraphy Portrait" would look after being professionally framed

For the best possible display, this portrait should be professionally framed.

A frame is not included with this artwork!

See Huge Image of this Painting

Approximate Measurements

Artwork Panel: 31.4cm x 31.5cm  ≈  12¼" x 12½"

Silk/Brocade Border: 40.8cm x 40.8cm  ≈  16" x 16"

Information about how this Asian painting is mounted

Dragon Symbol

Chinese / Japanese Calligraphy Portrait

"Dragon" Japanese / Chinese Character

A quick lesson in Chinese Hanzi and Japanese Kanji

The three boxes in the middle below are all forms of
Traditional Chinese Characters often referred to as Hanzi in Chinese, and Kanji in Japanese.

Simplified Character

Printed Calligraphy

Typical Calligraphy

Typical Handwriting

Ancient Official Script

If you want to open your mind to more, read below...

Examples of the earliest pictographs or hieroglyphics in China date back almost 5000 years. The area now known as China was a fragmented region with various kingdoms rising and falling. Each kingdom or nationality in China had it's own writing system, and could not effectively communicate with people of other kingdoms.

Finally, in about 221 B.C. the Qin Dynasty unified all of China. One of the Qin Emperor's goals was to standardize the writing system across all of his empire.
The official script was the second-generation of writing approved during Qin.

This official script was still very complex to write, with the invention of the printing press still thousands of years away, official scribes literally had their hands full as they penned various documents. Historian will argue this point, but the Traditional Chinese Characters that you see today entered a somewhat final lexicon during the Wei kingdom (220-265 A.D.) and the Jin Dynasties (265-420 A.D.)

The adoption of Simplified Chinese Characters happened under Chairman Mao in the early 1950s in an effort to make it easier for under-educated people to learn to write. However, true calligraphers will only write Traditional Chinese Characters. Places like Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore, and several other regions in Asia that were unaffected by Chairman Mao's rule still use traditional characters in day to day life.

Traditional Chinese Characters are known in Japanese as Kanji. In Japan, these characters are used every day in newspapers, magazines, documents, and personal letters. However, they are mixed with Japanese-specific characters called Hiragana, which means a Chinese person trying to read a Japanese newspaper can only get the gist of what the story might be about.

In China, people speak all kinds of languages such as Mandarin, Cantonese, Shanghainese, Tibetan and many other regional languages. When two Chinese people meet, they might not be able to understand each other because they speak different Chinese languages. But they can write down what they are trying to say, and be easily understood thanks to the Qin emperor's dream of a standardized writing system.

Think about this fact:
One third of the world's population can understand the Chinese characters shown above, while only 6% of the people in the world can natively understand the English words that I am writing here.

© 2005


This Chinese character is "long" which means dragon.
(Note: This "long" is not English, so the "o" vowel sound is more like "oh" in English)

In Chinese culture, the dragon represents power and for many generations, only the emperor could dare to wear the symbol of a dragon on their clothing.


If you hang this character on your wall, it indicates that you are strong and powerful. A great gift for a corporate executive with a chip on his shoulder - lol.

This is probably the most popular Chinese character for tattoos these days. You'll see it on the shoulders of pro-basketball players, and on the hips of pop star divas. Of course, half of them have no idea what this symbol means, and the other half incorrectly think it directly means "warrior" or "power".

Of course, long before it became a tattoo staple, the mythological dragon roamed the earth - at least in the legends and minds of Asian people.

The history of the dragon is hidden deep in myth and history. Drawings and symbols of this mythological animal can be traced back to prehistoric tribal peoples of China. Evidence of the dragon's importance in Chinese culture can be traced to dragon figures and other artifacts unearthed from the Yin Dynasty (3000 years ago).

About the materials and construction of this painting:

The calligraphy was done using black Chinese ink on xuan paper (known incorrectly in the west as "rice paper"). The raw artwork was then taken to our Wall Scroll Workshop where it was laminated to more sheets of xuan paper, and built into a beautiful portrait with silk brocade border.

About the artist:

This calligraphy was created by Li Dan-Qing of Beijing. He's an older gentleman who has been involved with the art community of China, all of his life. Now in retirement, he creates calligraphy for us for sort of "hobby income".

This item was listed or modified
Apr 15th, 2013

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A nice Chinese calligraphy wall scroll

The wall scroll that Sandy is holding in this picture is a "large size"
single-character wall scroll.
We also offer custom wall scrolls in small, medium, and an even-larger jumbo size.

A professional Chinese Calligrapher

Professional calligraphers are getting to be hard to find these days.
Instead of drawing characters by hand, the new generation in China merely type roman letters into their computer keyboards and pick the character that they want from a list that pops up.

There is some fear that true Chinese calligraphy may become a lost art in the coming years. Many art institutes in China are now promoting calligraphy programs in hopes of keeping this unique form of art alive.

Trying to learn Chinese calligrapher - a futile effort

Even with the teachings of a top-ranked calligrapher in China, my calligraphy will never be good enough to sell. I will leave that to the experts.

A high-ranked Chinese master calligrapher that I met in Zhongwei

The same calligrapher who gave me those lessons also attracted a crowd of thousands and a TV crew as he created characters over 6-feet high. He happens to be ranked as one of the top 100 calligraphers in all of China. He is also one of very few that would actually attempt such a feat.

Typical Gallery Price: $40.00

Your Price: $16.88