Shuji (習字), also called Shodo (書道), is Japanese calligraphy which is drawn with ink and a brush. Brushes are lively and can’t be controlled by forcible methods, making this art an experience in learning alternative ways to control one’s environment. Additionally, slight distractions may ruin a work, creating a need to sort one’s thoughts and put them aside to be picked up later. Basic study involves practicing writing a model repeatedly and receiving corrective direction from an instructor. Once most forms are mastered, one can become an instructor.
Nihon Shuji (日本習字) is one of many societies for the instruction and promotion of Japanese calligraphy. This society is possibly the most prevalent, their models being used by most public schools for practice and exhibits.
Participants in calligraphy societies regularly submit works to be evaluated by the organization. Based on these works the students are assigned rank. Levels are generally parallel to any dojo (道場) style of study, like karate (空手) or kendo (剣道).
At the higher levels, roughly equivalent to black belts in martial arts, students may receive different levels of teaching licenses.
Many script styles have developed over the centuries and several are still practiced regularly today.