I’m 17, new in Sydney, and have learned Chinese calligraphy for past 10 yrs. I intend to find a part-time job as an assistant or teacher in a Chinese calligraphy course, does anyone know such classes, teachers, workshops or even university lessons? This is really important to me. Please provide as much details as possible.

Maybe your best bet (taking your age and experience into consideration) is to start a small informal class where young kids (maybe aged 6-10) who probably are of Chinese ancestry can learn the basics from you. There are a lot of Chinese parents living abroad that are concerned their kids are losing or not getting any exposure to the culture of their ancestry.

Once you’re a bit older, I bet you’d be able to expand these classes to adults (including non-Chinese who are interested in Chinese culture and calligraphy). I work with a Japanese calligrapher who does this quite successfully in Boston.

With age comes respect, and I see a stumbling block with trying to teach adults when you’re 17 years old. Take this from a guy who started his first business when he was 16. I had to fight for every bit of respect and to prove myself to everyone until I was into my mid-20s.

Another thing to consider is selling your calligraphy artwork. You’ll need to figure out how to get it framed or mounted as wall scrolls for a reasonable amount. You can sell the ready-to-hang artwork online or at a local art show.

Some calligraphers that I supply wall scrolls to (yes, I build wall scrolls, and sell Asian calligraphy for a living) will buy blank wall scrolls, then take requests and make custom calligraphy on the spot. This is very good for festivals or events in a public park. The wall scroll might cost you $30, but you sell it for $60 or more in that environment.


Hello, I am a practioner of Karate (Ashihara) and Krav Maga. I have a theoritical curiosity, hence I ask this question. Could any of you please tell me the pro’s and con’s of shoulder strikes? How they are exactly employed and if they are effective? In the two styles that I practice they are almost not there (shoulder’s strength is employed in punches and other strikes but shoulder itself is rarely used). I have seen some direct shoulder strikes in demonstrations of the Chinese Art of Bajiquan and they looked quite different from whatever use of shoulders I had seen before. So, I request you to kindly shed some light on the topic and tell me if the art you practice has direct shoulder strikes or not and how do they work.

The shoulder strike you are talking about are not just in Baji but in many other Chinese martial arts styles, Taiji too. They are used close in or against a person charging in and they work beautifully. They do take timing though if you want to send a charging opponent flying. If you are just close in and don’t have your opponents momentum to help you shoulder strikes still work to upset your opponents balance and then follow up with something else like a throw, take down.
Karate has them too (Pinan Shodan) but are taught only at the advanced ranks and then often it is just done the way you turn into an opponent. They go along with the grappling techniques in Karate which also are taught in the advanced ranks.
Another fun technique I really like that is similar in timing and execution to the shoulder strike is using the hips. For a guy getting struck with the hips brings a whole new reaction for you if you get it right.