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How to Write Names in Chinese Calligraphy

Updated April 12, 2017

Most people can write their name, but not everyone can write their name in more than one language. Chinese and English differ phonetically, orthographically and grammatically. As a result, the way you write and pronounce your name in Chinese is different to how you would when speaking English. To write your name in Chinese calligraphy you must be able to write Chinese characters, have a Chinese version of your name and develop your Chinese calligraphy skills.

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  1. Transliterate your name into Chinese using an online Chinese name creator. Alternatively, ask someone who is fluent in both Chinese and English to create a Chinese version of your name. Chinese transliterated names are created by using Chinese characters to represent the syllables that make up your name, so that your Chinese name is pronounced in a similar way to how it is pronounced when speaking English.

  2. Practice writing your Chinese name with a pen and paper. Become familiar with the composition and stroke order of the characters used to represent your name.

  3. Choose a calligraphy style you would like to use to write your name in Chinese. Whether cursive, semi-cursive, regular or one of the many other Chinese scripts, choose a style of calligraphy you like and are able to use without much difficultly. If you are a complete beginner, choose a more basic calligraphy style, such as regular script.

  4. Learn how to hold a calligraphy brush. There are a number of different ways to hold a calligraphy brush, but the brush is invariably held vertically.

  5. Learn how to make strokes with your brush. The style of brush strokes you use will depend on the style of calligraphy you compose with. The techniques used to compose characters when using a brush differ to those used when writing with pen and paper, so you will need to become accustomed to using a brush.

  6. Practice writing your Chinese name with a calligraphy brush, ink and paper. It may take some time before you are able to produce calligraphy you are happy with, but practice makes perfect.

  7. Tip

    Write your last name first. In Chinese, family names typically precede given names. Join a Chinese calligraphy class to improve and develop your Chinese calligraphy skills.

    Warning

    Many Chinese characters share identical pronunciation. When choosing Chinese characters to represent the syllables that make up your name, choose characters with positive or neutral meanings. Avoid characters with negative or unwanted meanings. Use a dictionary or consult with someone who is fluent in both Chinese and English to ensure you choose appropriate Chinese characters.

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Things You'll Need

  • Online Chinese name transliterator
  • Pen
  • Paper
  • Calligraphy brush
  • Ink

About the Author

Miles Jarvis has been writing since 2009, with expertise in the field of East Asian languages and culture. He earned a B.A. in Chinese studies at the University of Waikato and has also studied at universities in Hong Kong and Japan.

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