Experimenting with New Ink

Experimenting with New Ink

Once, when I was 7 or 8, I received two lessons from a master Persian calligrapher, a Mr. Foradi, in Tehran.

Mr. Foradi used to be on contract at my fathers' advertising and design firm. In the first lesson, he taught me how to hold the pen, how to ink its tip, and how to cushion the thin calligraphy paper. He then asked me to write, 100 times in a neat row: "A Man's Virtue is Far Better than His Post and Wealth"—a piece from a 1000 year old Persian poem.

  ادب مرد به ز دولت اوست. 

It is hard to find expert Persian calligraphers and the right equipment and training in the U.S. 

My father bought me the Persian calligraphy pen shown in this photo from The Persian Calligraphy Institute in Tehran, Iran, in August of 2006. 

I used the pen and the special ink, which my father had also purchased for me, to write "Traditional Music" on a piece of printer paper. (I should say here that I didn't think much of Persian traditional music when I first arrived in the U.S. as a teenager. Now, I have learned to appreciate enough of its subtleties to enjoy it.) 

Once, when I was 7 or 8, I received two lessons from a master Persian calligrapher, a Mr. Foradi, in Tehran. Mr. Foradi used to be on contract at my fathers' advertising and design firm. In the first lesson, he taught me how to hold the pen, how to cushion the paper and asked me to write, 100 times, that "A Man's Virtue is Far Better than His Post"—a piece from a 1000 year old Persian poem.

 

Comments:

Masood,

Interesting comments on 'pen & ink.' I had a similar passion earlier in my career. In fact, I found an old 'Letter to the Editor' from July, 2003 Harper's which says it all. Best, Ralph

Being in academia, the writing instrument
is the interfacing of the scholar and his work. While an undergraduate,I developed a rather
fond attachment to an old, fat, green Esterbrook ink pen. Taking notes,writing reports, and working problems actually became enjoyable. The
Esterbrook carried its magical charm through the beginning of graduate school. I retired it upon the completion of my M.S., since my wife gave
me a new Sheaffer pen and pencil set. These writing instruments gave a new dimension to my academic work. During the next two years they were as much a part of me as my old Esterbrook
had been. In a sense, I give my Sheaffer pencil as much credit for passing my Ph.D. qualifying exams as I give myself. Now that time has passed and I am teaching, I have graduated to the
Montblanc Diplomat .... The security the pen offers is the traditional design. In any event, the Montblanc is now my new interfacing of mind
to paper, and whatever that says about my psychological makeup, let it be.
RALPH H. HANNON
Malta, Ill.

Posted by Ralph Hannon on April 05, 2008 at 09:29 AM PDT #

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