Kevin Honan Workshops

The Calligraphy Society’s sponsor, The Rising Sons Brewery, has generously funded three full-day workshops with visiting calligrapher, Kevin Honan.


The Rising Sons Brewery is the official sponsor of the Calligraphy Society in University College Cork.

Kevin Honan is an experienced calligrapher with the Association of Irish Calligraphers and produces handmade calligraphic pieces, woodcuts and lino prints. His recent commissions include these two panels which document the lives of two saints, St Laurence and St Patrick, for Our Lady’s School in Templeogue.


St Laurence. Image Copyright: Kevin Honan.


St Patrick. Image Copyright: Kevin Honan.

The funding covers three workshops which will run from 10 a.m.–4 p.m. on Saturdays in room WGB 1.26. The purpose of the full-day workshops is to work on one or several showpieces. As the Society’s invited tutor, Kevin will give help on the technical aspects: using watercolour and gouache, refining and transferring drawings and refining the calligraphic hand. The first of the workshops focused on thinking about the calligraphic elements:

  1.  the calligraphic hand (size, weight, colour, layout);
  2.  a highlighted element (Capitals, motif, abstract pattern, cut letter, etc.);
  3. Paper (coloured, prepared, etc.).

The second workshop session will concentrate on creating a first, rough version of the showpiece by cutting out and arranging the elements and making final decisions on colour. In the third and final workshop, members will create the best paper finish and present their pieces.

The dates for the workshops are as follows:

  • August 19th;
  • August 26th; and
  • October 28th.

These workshops are for members only and are free of cost (including catering). The Society will supply good quality paper and the CS department has kindly offered to provide the water for diluting the ink. Participants should bring:

  • A text to work on (anything from a haiku to a short poem or prose piece);
  • The usual calligraphic equipment, a variety of nib sizes,  gouache and
    watercolour if they have it;
  • Two HB pencils, ruler, scissors, craft knife, cutting board or strong

The Book of Kells: Image and Text Student Exhibition

The students of the “Skills for Medieval Historians” MA module of the School of History in University College Cork (UCC) have created an online exhibition of the Book of Kells in collaboration with UCC Special Collections.



The Book of Kells, Trinity College Dublin. Image Copyright: Emma McCarthy, 2016.


The objective of the exhibition is to provide students with the opportunity to engage with the practical issues of copyright restrictions, digital presence, object handling, photography, marketing and publicity. Trinity College Dublin’s Manuscripts Department generously supported the MA Student Exhibition by supplying the images, like the illustration of Matthew below, free of charge.


Portrait of Matthew, The Book of Kells, TCD MS 58, folio 28v.
Copyright: Special Collections, UCC.

The exhibition is comprised of a series of blog posts, the first of which is due to be launched today, 26 May 2017. The subsequent ten blog posts will be released over five days, resuming on Monday, 29 May and the concluding blog post will be published on Friday, 2 June 2017. Dr Damian Bracken and Dr Diarmuid Scully were consulted in the creation of the exhibition’s blog posts and Vicky Janssens of the Classics Department provided the audio recording of Kells folio 204r. The audio recording of Kells f. 204r is available on YouTube. The digital facsimile image of Kells folio 204r can be viewed here:


kells f. 204r

A close up of the Book of Kells folio 204r. Copyright: Trinity College Dublin.


The online exhibition can be accessed via the following link:

Calligraphy Society AGM – May 24th

Hello all,

We are delighted to announce that the Calligraphy Society AGM will take place on Wednesday 24th May, at 1 pm, in WGB 304. Our schedule has been updated to reflect this addition to the Calligraphy Society’s meetings, see here: Schedule.

The following is the agenda for the meeting as set out by Society President, Marc van Dongen, Secretary, Joel Walmsley and Treasurer, Jurek Kirakowski. For your own convenience, the agenda has also been emailed to everyone via the listserv.


1. Reports.
-a. President’s report
-b. Treasurer’s report
-c. Secretary’s report
2. Election of Committee members:
-a. President
-b. Secretary
-c. Treasurer
-d. 2 x ordinary Committee members.
3. Amendments to the constitution:
-a. New Rule 7.3 (see below).
-b. Rule change to 3.1: addition of student members.
-c. New rule 12.6: Addition of a Website subcommittee.
-d. New rule 12.7: Rule regarding other subcommittees
4. Membership fees.
5. Sponsor-related activities
6. Any other business.


Regarding the positions mentioned in item (2), nominations are as follows:
– President: Marc van Dongen
– Treasurer: Jurek Kirakowski
– Secretary: Joel Walmsley
– Ordinary Committee members: Amy Moloney, Elaine Kelly

We draw your attention to section 11 of the constitution, which details the procedure for the nomination and election of officers of the society. The following details pertain to the constitutional changes proposed under item 3:

a. Add a new Rule 7.3, as follows:
7.3: Rules 7.3, 5.1, 8.1, 9.1 and 10.1 of this constitution may never be changed.

b. To Rule 3.1, add the following:
Student Members: Currently registered full-time or part-time students of UCC.

c. Add Rule 12.6, as follows:
12.6 There shall be a Website Subcommittee, responsible for maintaining the Society’s website and other online facilities as necessary. Membership of this committee is open to all members of the Society and shall be constituted on an ad hoc basis with no upper limit on the number of members, or the duration served.

d. Add Rule 12.7, as follows:
12.7 Other ad hoc Subcommittees may be formed as necessary, determined by the Committee.

Please note: Quorum for an AGM is 7 members, and votes on constitutional changes require a 2/3 majority of those present, so please do make every effort to attend. Regular reminders will be posted on the website and sent via the listserv in advance of the meeting.

Looking forward to seeing you all there!


This week has certainly been a memorable one for the Calligraphy Society. First, the society celebrated its first anniversary – details of the AGM will be posted in due course. Second, what better way to celebrate the culmination of a successful first year than with the confirmation of sponsorship! That’s right. Earlier this week, Calligraphy Society President, Marc van Dongen, announced the Rising Sons Brewery as our sponsor.


Rising Sons Brewery, Corn Market Street, Cork.

A successful and popular family-owed micro-brewery, the Rising Sons Brewery has won a number of illustrious awards including the “International Beer Challenge” and “World Beer Awards”. The support of the Rising Sons Brewery provides the Calligraphy Society with the necessary funds to host half-day and full day workshops with noted calligraphers.


Award-winning Sponsor of UCC Calligraphy Society

And finally, in exchange for their generous support the Society has offered to write some text on one of their boards. So, if you find yourself stopping by the Rising Sons in the near future, look out for our members’ handiwork! This opportunity marks but the first of many future collaborations between UCC Calligraphy Society and the Rising Sons.

How to Join

Both Staff and students of UCC are welcome to join the society and there is no experience required. The annual fee is € 20 for each member. We have a series of workshops for beginners and new members get a starter kit (nibs, nib holder, ink, paper, …). The society does not use any books but you are free to use whatever textbooks you like when practising. If you would like to join the society please contact our Membership Administrator, Amy Moloney, at the following email address:

Membership fees can be paid directly via bank transfer to:

  UCC Calligraphy Society

  Bank of Ireland

  Sort code: 90-96-95

  Account Number: 78350430

  IBAN: IE97BOFI90969578350430