Back to All Events

Calligraphy Workshop Weekend

Led by Gerow Reece

Friday, June 29 – Sunday, July 1, 2018

Come and deepen your weekend practicing calligraphy with a brush. Delve into both East Asian and Western calligraphy--developing sensitivity to both line and space, and awareness in both eye and hand. In our Workshop, each word will gain its own expressive unity rather than being just a line-up of individual letters. This brings a shift of focus from outer form to inner feeling, expression beyond words via words. Participants should bring 3 or 4 words or a phrase that feels important – worth looking at much more than once.

Gerow Reece first sat with Yamada Reirin Roshi and the young monk, Maezumi Sensei, in the old brick Zenshuji in Los Angeles in the early 60s. He then practiced with with Robert and Ann Aitken at Kokoan in their home in Honolulu. While studying in Kyoto, Japan, he sat at Antaiji with Uchiyama Roshi and later with Morinaga Roshi at Daishu-in and Kobori Nanrei at Ryoko-in, never settling on one person as teacher until the arrival of his son. Gerow serves Ceremonial Tea and teaches calligraphy at Jikoji. 

Gerow crafting signs for the Jikoji grounds.

Note: All meals are provided for workshop participants. Please see below for full schedule.

After a 7pm dinner, Friday evening's session includes writing out a personally chosen word or phrase using brush and color, then exploring how to make your brushwork more expressive. Basic brushwork will be introduced and relevant books will be noted and made available.


Saturday morning begins at 7am with an optional period of Zazen (sitting meditation), followed by breakfast at 7:45. After breakfast we will learn to write three or or four Chinese ideographs beginning with the number 1 – a "simple" horizontal line.

After a 12:30pm lunch, we will apply the same sense of stroke and flow used for Chinese ideographs while forming English words.

After 6pm dinner, we will will explore and draw inspiration from books on Eastern and Western calligraphy, and then develop our work from earlier in the day. 


Sunday morning also begins with an optional 7am period of Zazen, then breakfast at 7:45. with an optional period of Zazen (sitting meditation), followed by breakfast at 7:45. After breakfast you can continue practicing your calligraphic skills, sit in our zendo, or explore our trails. You are then welcome to join the regular Jikoji Sunday Program (zazen, optional meditation instruction, chanting service, and Dharma talk.)

After lunch, workshop participants will do large-form experimental calligraphic work based on their experience over the weekend. Tea will be served. We'll end by 4:30.

The Calligraphy Workshop attendance fee is $50, and you are welcome to come for all or any part of the weekend. Meals are included.

You can register by clicking the button below. Fees can be made through our DONATE page or in person on the day of the Workshop.

If you wish to stay overnight on Friday or Saturday evening, room reservations may be booked separately on our RESERVATIONS page. Campsites are also available. Additional questions? Please email us!

Refrigerator and pantry space are available if you'd like to bring additional food of your own.

If you have any brush calligraphy tools (brushes, ink, ink stone, paper, etc.) please bring them. Materials will also be available for use here.

Here's what our full schedule looks like:

7:00 pm      dinner
8:00            evening session
9:30            free time / bed time

7:00 am     zazen
7:45           breakfast
9:00           morning session
12:30         lunch
2:00            afternoon session
5:30            break
6:00            dinner
7:30            evening session
9:30            free time / bed time

7:00 am     zazen
7:45           breakfast
9:00           morning sesshin
10:00         Jikoji Sunday Program
12:30         lunch
2:00           afternoon session
4:30           end

Earlier Event: June 24
Science and Buddhism
Later Event: July 7
Sunrise Zazenkai