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How To Properly Hand Write In Japanese

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How To Properly Hand Write In Japanese

Postby Jerrid » Wed 09.29.2010 3:57 am

I have a question regarding hand writing. I have learned a few spoken words in Japanese, but never how I would actually read them in Japanese. In the beginning lessons, the alphabets have a lot of extra... "nitches" in them. I do not know how to properly describe it, but looking at how it is hand writen and how it is typed, the typed versions is more easier to write, at least in my opinion. Not as much flair I assure you, but easier and quicker. If I were to write in Japanese as in a letter to some one, would I be expected to use the extra flair or would writing it as if it was typed acceptable. I have not even gotten far enough to see if this would even be an issue with actual written Japanese words, but I would be assuming it would.

The only other way to describe this is like a capitalized "A" written is how it looks typed, at least standardly anyway. But add a little flair and the "A" would look like a "cursive A" which I do not know how to show a pic of here. Or maybe even better a description is with the lower case "a". Most people write it standardly with out the over hang at the top. But typed out you can clearly see the over hang in this forum.

So does one need to learn the little "extra" strokes or just writing how it looks like when it is typed from a computer acceptable or even encouraged? (And I am not even talking about different fonts on computers, just standard stuff.) Thank you for your time and patience.
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Re: How To Properly Hand Write In Japanese

Postby yangmuye » Wed 09.29.2010 9:06 am

If you want to be a calligrapher, you may learn how to write "cursive" kanji. They may write them instead of kana.
Otherwise, you'd better don't add some "extra strokes" by yourself. Just follow a textbook's suggestion.
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Re: How To Properly Hand Write In Japanese

Postby Hyperworm » Wed 09.29.2010 9:12 am

It's quite possible and acceptable to write without the "flicks" at the end of strokes. I think though, that "easier and quicker" shouldn't really be your priority at the minute - your writing won't be that fast at the start anyway limited by your memory, so you can adapt your style to speed later, when you get more used to writing. ^^;
Right now I think you should try for good handwriting - and by that I mean you should avoid taking shortcuts and write it how you most like it to look (within the bounds of what's acceptable), whether that's with or without the "flicks". Develop your style. :)

(Also take note that some of the "flicks" and "serifs" on printed kanji, you aren't expected to (and probably shouldn't) reproduce in written form.)
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Re: How To Properly Hand Write In Japanese

Postby Jerrid » Thu 09.30.2010 12:52 am

http://thejapanesepage.com/beginners/hiragana/i

The link above may help me describe it better. The "i" is written on the left as if a computer had "stamped" it out. While on the right side it looks like some one had used his own hand to write it out. What I am asking is it ok to write like it is shown on the left, where there is no sharp edges as it were and just simple strokes. The right side makes, at least to me, it harder to learn because I want to try to get it just right with the sharp edges and angles and "tips", while the left is straight forward and easier.

So is it acceptable to write like it is on the left or would the Japanese think that it is laziness or stupid? Is it acceptable as a foreigner going to Japan or a no no for any one? I am not talking about becoming a calligraphy student or master, I just want to be understood clearly and learn as easily and as fast as possible.
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Re: How To Properly Hand Write In Japanese

Postby chikara » Thu 09.30.2010 1:38 am

Jerrid wrote:http://thejapanesepage.com/beginners/hiragana/i

The link above may help me describe it better. The "i" is written on the left as if a computer had "stamped" it out. While on the right side it looks like some one had used his own hand to write it out. What I am asking is it ok to write like it is shown on the left, where there is no sharp edges as it were and just simple strokes. .....

TJP e youkoso :)

As Hyperworm-san posted above it is quite OK to write without the serifs (sans-serif) as the image on the left appears.
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Re: How To Properly Hand Write In Japanese

Postby Jerrid » Thu 09.30.2010 2:34 am

chikara wrote:TJP e youkoso :)

As Hyperworm-san posted above it is quite OK to write without the serifs (sans-serif) as the image on the left appears.


Well that is good, I never liked fish scales any way... but what does youkoso mean? or "e" for that matter? And thank you every one for your help.
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Re: How To Properly Hand Write In Japanese

Postby furrykef » Thu 09.30.2010 3:21 am

It means "Welcome to TJP!". The "e" (in this case, へ in kana) is a particle that basically means "toward" or "to". Typically, "ni" can be used in place of "e", and this is one of those cases, though I see "e" used more often with "youkoso" than "ni".

If you look at the heading for the forum, you'll also see that above "Welcome to the Forum!" is フォーラムへようこそ! ("Fooramu e youkoso!"). And, as it happens, the Japanese title of one of the games I'm translating at LLTVG right now is "Tiny Toon Adventures 2: Montana Land e Youkoso!" So, as you can see, it's a very common idiom. :)

(EDIT: wow, mere minutes after posting this I had to translate the sentence タイニートゥーンの世界へようこそ -- "Tainy Tuun no sekai e youkoso", i.e., "welcome to the world of Tiny Toons!". Very common construction indeed... :lol:)

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Re: How To Properly Hand Write In Japanese

Postby Snowflake » Thu 09.30.2010 8:03 am

Good morning, Jerrid! I did a little search for you here on TJP and found this Kanji Handwriting Thread. It's from a few years ago; the last entry was made in Sept 2009. There are 20 pages, many of which include images of our own forum members' handwriting! Perhaps taking a peek at other people's real handwriting will give you more confidence in your own.

From what I see in that thread, it looks as if there is a big variety in handwriting and, provided it's neat, well-spaced and legible, it's acceptable. I hope this helps!
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Re: How To Properly Hand Write In Japanese

Postby Jerrid » Sun 10.03.2010 2:38 am

Snowflake wrote:Perhaps taking a peek at other people's real handwriting will give you more confidence in your own.

From what I see in that thread, it looks as if there is a big variety in handwriting and, provided it's neat, well-spaced and legible, it's acceptable. I hope this helps!


Yes! Thank you. It does help. :D
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Re: How To Properly Hand Write In Japanese

Postby Jerrid » Fri 10.29.2010 12:25 am

I may already have my answer from previous posts, but I am going to ask any way. I noticed that some letters such as "ki" on the training page for Katakana the キ symbol is written differently on the same page. One where they show you how to do the strokes, the long vertical stroke is leaning more to the right. But the same letter "ki" where it shows how to sound it out, the long vertical stroke is leaning more the the left. Does it really matter which way it leans? Would it matter if it did not lean at all and was just up and down only? I have noticed other letters like that too. For "ho" ホ it shows that the long vertical stroke leans while the other does not. Which one is right or does it matter?
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Re: How To Properly Hand Write In Japanese

Postby Hyperworm » Fri 10.29.2010 9:15 am

Wow. That's really misleading.

The stroke order diagrams in the katakana pages are using a font set to italics.
So normally vertical strokes tend left at the bottom.

The version you see in the kana chart at the top of that page, and just to the right of "Sound", is the correct one. ._.

(キ's vertical stroke should tend right a little bit at the bottom.)
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Re: How To Properly Hand Write In Japanese

Postby NileCat » Fri 10.29.2010 9:43 am

Ok. I think I see your confusion. Let me explain.
The difference annoying you is this, correct?
Image
The angle of the lean doesn’t matter.
It would be similar to the following.
Image
You could recognize the letter “t” no matter how tilted it is.
In our handwriting, small differences cannot be a big problem.

However, take a look at this.
Image
In this case, a small difference matters as you see. In a sense, “p” and “q” is similar to each other.
If there exists a similar letter, you would be expected to be careful about the small difference.

A common example would be this. “い”(i in hiragana) and “り”(ri in hiragana)
Image
In this case, the length of the second stroke matters. If it’s い, it shoud be same or shorter than the first stroke. If it’s り, the second stroke has to be longer than the first stroke.

Your question was about katakana キ. Since we don’t have any letter look like キ, the small differences in handwriting don’t matter.
Got it?
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Re: How To Properly Hand Write In Japanese

Postby Hyperworm » Fri 10.29.2010 10:10 am

:D

I agree that the angle of the tilt isn't actually going to matter too much--people will recognize it all the same.
But still, I think キ written the way it appears in this font is the most common way, vertical is acceptable, and I don't think I've ever seen handwriting with キ sloping the other way, outside of italics. (Maybe I'm just forgetting.)

Also (from the Layton games) :
Image
That い annoys me :?
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Re: How To Properly Hand Write In Japanese

Postby Adriano » Fri 10.29.2010 10:35 am

:mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :sweatdrop:
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Re: How To Properly Hand Write In Japanese

Postby NileCat » Fri 10.29.2010 10:36 am

Hyperworm wrote:But still, I think キ written the way it appears in this font is the most common way, vertical is acceptable, and I don't think I've ever seen handwriting with キ sloping the other way, outside of italics. (Maybe I'm just forgetting.)

Well, let me show you the reason.
Image
In the picture above, at first glance, (b) looks like “first scalpel”, doesn’t it? :)
In this case, キ and メ could be confusing, so to speak.
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