What is Kanji?
Kanji are the adopted logographic Chinese characters used in the Japanese writing system. They are used alongside the two syllabic scripts of hiragana and katakana.
They are used for writing nouns, adjectives, adverbs and verbs.
How to participate
Fill out the simple form below and give us any necessary pronunciation pointers.
E.g. For the name "Emily," something like this would be helpful:
E (like end)
mi (like Mississippi)
ly (like Lee jeans)
We will also consult www.pronouncenames.com
We will expertly hand write your name in kanji characters and in katakana on A4 paper.
We will email it to you as a jpeg and also provide you with the meanings of the kanji.
Print it out and enjoy!
This example is the kanji characters for "Mark"
真 (ma) true
明 ('a' elongation) bright
久 (ku) eternal
This example is for "Alice"
愛 (a) love
莉 (ri) jasmine
寿 (su) longevity/congratulations
This service is usually reserved for people that actually visit our center in Nara, but due to the Corona travel restrictions, we have decided to offer it to all our friends and supporters free of charge online.
We look forward to receiving your submission.
Nara Sumi Ink
As the Buddhist monk “Kukai” brought methods to make ink stones to Japan from China, the first national product was made at Kofuku-ji temple.
Lamp-soot ink stones soon became popular thanks to their better depth of blackness, smoothness in grinding and luster compared to pine-burnt soot ink stones which had been popular until then.
The study of Buddhism flourished at that time and demand for calligraphy tools rose due to the practice of transcribing sutras and the recording of notices in daily life. Nara has been supporting such religious and artistic activities for over a thousand years.
The manufacture of Nara Brushes started in 806 after a Buddhist monk “Kukai” returned from studying the latest form of Buddhism at that time in China.
The features of Nara Brushes lie in the materials: craftspeople carefully select suitable hairs from various animals according to softness, resilience and water-absorption, those hairs are then mixed into a delicate balance.
The characteristics of each hair depends not only on the species of animal, but also on the part of the body in which the hair was taken and the season. In addition to calligraphy brushes, make-up brushes have also become popular in recent years as well.