May—July, 2024

Summer Shodo (In-Person)


Course Information

Japanese calligraphy, also known as shodo, is a revered, centuries-old art form and Zen practice which evokes harmony, beauty, and balance. Shodo uses a brush and charcoal ink on paper, wood plaques, and fabric and includes Chinese characters (kanji) and Japanese hiragana. Although it originated in the techniques used for letter writing, with its unique form of expression it has developed into an art genre.

This summer, we are simultaneously offering both online and in-person Shodo course options. To see how these course names / levels correspond, please see here.

These courses are designed for adults aged 18 and above. However, consideration for enrollment may be given to students aged 17 or 16 on a case-by-case basis. Feel free to inquire for further information.

Please note this is not a language course. If you wish to learn Japanese language, please see our other courses.

Select a level to learn more.
Shodo for Beginners | Shodo Open Level

See the Shodo Level Guide for sample materials at each level.

For a printer friendly version of these courses, please click here: 2024 Summer Shodo In-Person (Japanese Calligraphy) (PDF)

Course Descriptions

  • Shodo for Beginners A

     Fridays, May 31—July 19, 12-1:45 pm ET
    (no class 7/5)
    IN-PERSON·7 classes·Megumi Barringer

    Students will learn the brush strokes used in the basic 楷書 (kaisho)/regular script. This will be a small class size, and the course will involve both homework practice and in-class time over Zoom. (For details of the schedule, please read below.) In the Zoom class, students are expected to show their work with the teacher and other students so that everyone can learn from each other. Students must purchase their own supplies ahead of beginning coursework, and the Language Center can provide recommendations for supplies. This course will prepare you for the Shodo Basic Kanji course.

    No prior Shodo or Japanese language experience necessary.  

  • Shodo Open Level

    Fridays, May 31—July 19, 4-5:45 pm ET
    (no class 7/5)
    IN-PERSON·7 classes·Megumi Barringer

    Students at any level from beginner (with some prior experience) to advanced are welcome to register. In this open level class, students who are more beginner will continue to learn how to write kanji in the 楷書 (kaisho)/regular script, and more advanced students will have the opportunity to hone their skills of the 行書 (gyosho) / semi-cursive, 草書 (sosho) / cursive, and 隷書 (reisho) / clerical scripts.

    初級、中級、上級、どのレベルの参加者も   大歓迎です。書道経験をもつ初級者は、楷書の向上を目的とし、上級者は、ご自身のスキルを更に磨くことができます。

    If you are an advanced student looking for a kana course, please see Shodo Courses (Online).

    Prerequisite: at minimum, students must have previously enrolled in the Shodo for Beginners course or have equivalent experience with Japanese calligraphy. (If you are not sure that you meet the prerequisite, please contact us at [email protected].) Complete beginners to Japanese calligraphy should enroll in Shodo for Beginners.  全くの初心者は、Shodo for Beginnersにご参加下さい。



    7-Class In-Person Courses
    Non-members: $255
    Members: $225


    How to Register

    Please register by Wednesday, May 29 (if possible). These classes are small, so we appreciate your early enrollment.

    Registration is accepted online (preferred) or by phone only at (212) 715-1269 or (212) 715-1293, (please inquire for hours).

    To purchase or renew a membership, please visit the Membership page and pay online. Or, call 212-715-1270.

    All registrants will receive a Welcome Letter from [email protected] on:

    • the afternoon of Thursday, May 30, 2024

    ご質問は [email protected] までご連絡ください。電話でのご登録を希望される方は、クレジットカードをご用意の上、212-715-1269又は212-715-1293までご連絡ください。

    Questions? Please email us at [email protected], or call (212) 715-1269 or (212) 715-1293.


    Additional Information

    Cancellation Policy: Cancellations are accepted until 12 pm ET on the business day before the course or workshop begins (for online Shodo, until 12 pm ET on the business day before coursework begins). After this deadline, cancellations are not accepted and tuition is not refundable or transferable for any reason (including for credit). Upon cancellation, the tuition paid minus a service charge ($20 for courses, $5 for workshops) will be refunded. Cancellations are only accepted via phone.

    Japan Society also reserves the right to cancel any course or workshop if sufficient enrollment is not obtained. In such cases, students already enrolled will receive full refunds (no service charge).

    By registering for a course, you accept and agree to the above terms of the cancellation policy.

    We do not record these classes, and recording of these classes is prohibited.


    Shodo Supplies

    All materials (brush, ink, paper, a felt pad, and a paperweight) are provided in class for classroom use only, although you are welcome to bring your own personal brush to class if you wish.



    Megumi Barringer

    Megumi Barringer

    Megumi Barringer (Calligraphy name Shuka Barringer) has a calligraphy instructor license from the Nihon Sogo Shogeiin of Public Interest…

    Learn More

      Japan Society programs are made possible by leadership support from Booth Ferris Foundation and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature. Support for Japan Society’s Language Center is provided, in part, by Mark F. Goldfield and Mary E. Hatch; Christopher Hong; Steven Giordano; and Dr. Bic Kanayjorn.