Written by Aditi Shrivastava
Talking about her journey as a calligraphy artist, Khadija Syeda says, “Creativity takes courage.” From pursuing a PhD in pharmaceutical sciences to following her passion for art, she has charted a long journey in the genre of Gothic calligraphy. On June 29, she will conduct a workshop at Kala Kollective in Pune. Excerpts from an interview:
What is Gothic calligraphy?
Calligraphy in English has various forms and scripts. Gothic calligraphy started in the medieval ages. Old religious scriptures, scrolls and messages were scribbled in this style. Gothic calligraphy requires a parallel pen, where the nib must be parallel to the paper for creating some beautiful fonts or designs.
How is it different from other forms of calligraphy?
This calligraphy has sharp edges, which is different from italics and curves. It has a very medieval look, which adds another vibrant dimension to the art.
What are the materials used to practise Gothic calligraphy?
Pens with nibs parallel to the paper are essential. As a learner, you can use normal paper for practising. Handmade sheets can be used for more creative artwork. As you grow, you will want to learn more, as there is a lot to learn.
Where did you learn calligraphy?
I have been trained in Arabic calligraphy at the Sharjah Institute of Calligraphy in UAE and English calligraphy is self-taught. Calligraphy fascinates me as an art form in the way that it transforms ordinary scripts into a work of art. My paintings have been exhibited at several venues, including a show promoting women empowerment, curated by calligrapher Achyut Palav, in Mumbai.
What are the things you will teach at the workshop?
The participants will first be familarised with the pen. This will be followed by covering entire alphabets using Gothic calligraphy, with practice drills. Lastly, the participants can take back home the work that they have created. A lot of people write quotes about life that are also motivational.