Soo Rae’s Bamboo

For months, if not years, I have been trying to find a particular species of bamboo, it is the ideal species for use in calligraphy pens. It has a sulcus on one side, or flat groove, that allows us to use the flat to create a ready-made flat on one side of the pen. It is also incredibly hard and retains an edge for weeks and weeks.


Finally, after many months of searching, my friend Soo-Rae came through with the connection. She was working in northern China at the time, and drove out of the city limits to an industrial area where a bamboo operation was located, and there, among the piles and piles of bamboo – many hundreds of thousands of stalks- she found me the bamboo I had been looking for.  The perfect bamboo.

Exhibit A

Exhibit B

Exhibit E

She then meticulously cut the long lengths into shippable portions, packed them, and sent them to me in MD. It was a glorious, wonderful thing to receive. I cut three pens as tests, just to see how it would perform. For the last 3 months I have almost used nothing else, they are that. good.


~ by Josh on June 5, 2013.

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