Cowichan Calligraphers mark 25 years of loving letters

Calligraphy by Warmland Calligrapher Marilyn Boechler. The Warmland Calligraphers are celebrating their 25 anniversary this year. (submitted)
Calligraphy by Warmland Calligrapher Betty Locke. The Warmland Calligraphers are celebrating their 25 anniversary this year. (submitted)
Calligraphy by Warmland Calligrapher Marilyn Boechler. The Warmland Calligraphers are celebrating their 25 anniversary this year. (submitted)
Calligraphy by Warmland Calligrapher Judy Matheson. The Warmland Calligraphers are celebrating their 25 anniversary this year. (submitted)
Calligraphy by Warmland Calligrapher Marilyn Boechler. The Warmland Calligraphers are celebrating their 25 anniversary this year. (submitted)

By Linda Yaychuk and Betty Locke

The Warmland Calligraphers group began modestly in 1995, with one teacher inspiring a group of students.

One of the founding members or the Warmland Calligraphers, Betty Locke, taught a calligraphy class at the Cowichan Community Centre 25 years ago.

At the end of the session, 12 women approached Betty in hopes that they could continue learning the fine art of calligraphy. The group decided to form a guild and Warmland Calligraphers of the Cowichan Valley was born.

Those 12 original members have grown to more than 80 calligraphers and five of the original members are still active.

The goal of the Guild is to nurture and support those who are learning this art. This is accomplished through workshops and classes. A number of these are held throughout the year and are given by local members, instructors from other Canadian guilds, or by instructors from other countries. Warmland Calligraphers have enjoyed workshops from wonderful teachers from Germany, France, Belgium, Ireland, Slovenia, Tasmania and the U.S.

Members have had the pleasure of attending international conferences. In 2007, the guild proudly hosted “Island Magic”, the 27th International Calligraphy Conference. Twenty-one instructors from various countries were invited and they presented an array of classes. More than 300 calligraphers who attended brought their families with them to enjoy theIsland.

General meetings are held on the second Tuesday of each month at the Cowichan Exhibition grounds. There are usually 40 or more people in attendance — some of whom come from Victoria, Parksville, Nanaimo, Ladysmith and Chemainus.

Meeting programmes educate us on various aspects of calligraphy and quite often a “hands-on” programme is enjoyed. Meetings also include “Gallerias” in which members voluntarily submit calligraphic pieces they have created on an assigned topic.

Space is also rented on the fourth Tuesday morning each month for “Playtime”. During these sessions more experienced members help newer calligraphers develop their calligraphic skills. This is more of a social gathering for the development of skills through practice. Part of this time is shared by a newly-formed group within the Guild called “Warmland Scriptors”. It is a group of more than 20 members who produce and present two pieces a month on given topics. Participants share their work through a private Facebook page and at Playtime.

The guild maintains contact with some other groups in Canada by publishing an annual journal, Reflections. This huge undertaking documents our year and is a retrospective of the artwork of the membership.

For more information visit warmlandcalligraphers.ca

Arts

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

From Nanoose Bay to the bookshelf, Howard the Gnome now a children’s book

Vancouver Island author explores Howard’s move down-Island

Nanaimo country singer releases new music video

‘Adrenaline’ is the second single from Joel Lee’s upcoming debut EP

Vancouver Island dance school pirouettes into full-fledged education institution

Steps Ahead studio will provide assistance with distance learning, as well as artistic classes

Former Victoria busker returns home with first album

Jeff Bryant performed as a human statue

Maclure house on tap in Art Gallery of Greater Victoria’s virtual tour

Inaugural virtual House Tour features an online tour of a beautiful 1916 Samuel Maclure

Island author launches literary podcast with Canada Council for the Arts grant

Shelley Leedhal will air 10 episodes of “Something Like Love” over 10 weeks

Nanaimo’s Cinefest film festival to be held online this year due to COVID-19

CineCentral Filmmakers Society’s annual festival to feature films made in 48 hours

Indigenous artists showcase extreme sport-themed art at Nanaimo Art Gallery

Touring exhibition ‘Boarder X’ features work inspired by skateboarding, snowboarding and surfing

Indigenous artist restores 20-year-old sculpture in downtown Victoria

Four Winds sculpture located near Tug Eatery encourages climate action

Gabriola theatre group live-streaming two new pandemic-themed plays

Gabriola Players to broadcast ‘All and Nothing’ and ‘Syd’s Cosmic Slump’ using Zoom

Kingcome artist wins contest at Museum of Anthropology

Coral Shaughnessy-Moon’s design will be sold on t-shirts at the museum and online

Most Read