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Aoi Yamaguchi — Master Calligrapher


Visitors to this year’s Trojan Horse was a Unicorn digital arts festival in Troia Portugal were wowed by Aoi Yamaguchi’s opening performance, in which the artist created beautiful large-scale calligraphic figures in response to pieces of music.

Chris caught up with Aoi and discovered more about the ancient art of calligraphy, including its range of 2,000-plus characters, the importance of the tools she uses to create them, and its role in the digital world. This isn’t just about writing, though — Aoi talks about overcoming her fears, following her dreams, mastering an art form, and expressing herself. There are lessons for everyone here.


Aoi Yamaguchi Calligraphy >

Aoi Yamaguchi on Instagram >

Aoi Yamaguchi on Twitter >


0:05:07 An introduction to calligraphy

0:09:27 Aoi's background

0:14:36 Going to China and becoming a calligraphy pro

0:20:35 Moving to the USA to study

0:24:28 Representing Japan and teaching people about calligraphy

0:28:07 Aoi's THU performance

0:36:09 The four elements of calligraphy

0:42:17 Creating calligraphy ink

0:45:32 Innovation in calligraphy

0:51:36 Where to learn more about Aoi

About the author

Christopher Nichols

Chris is a CG industry veteran and Director of Chaos Labs. He can also be heard regularly as the host of the CG Garage podcast which attracts 20,000 weekly listeners. With a background in both VFX and Design, Chris has worked for Gensler, Digital Domain, Imageworks and Method Studios. His credits include Maleficent, Oblivion and Tron: Legacy.

Originally published: December 12, 2022.
© Škoda Design

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