DOPA is about the power of the pen in an age of machines. We embrace technology, but know there is a romance about ink on paper, archived, mailed, or held under the light. It is not unlike the romance of a long train trip in Europe, a slower, older way of getting from A to B, but one which puts us in the same place generations before us sat and peered into their world.
We are interested in handwritten communications, an art that is increasing being lost to the computer. Why is it still relevant? Do we need to put the written word on paper when it can be sent faster through digital networks? Who are the people and groups that keep penmanship alive?
I couldn’t write legibly until I was 12. I have what was referred to back in the day as dyslexia. Today we know dyslexia is a bucket term for dozens of learning challenges. Illegible handwriting never stopped me from leaning heavily on others to help with my handwriting. It made me all the more appreciative, now and then, of my sister’s incredible calligraphy (she’s an artist).
Today writing is one of my greatest strengths. Ok, a keyboard is more practical for me, but I enjoy pen on paper. A lot. When you put your heart and soul into learning a skill, giving it up is not easy.
Eventually this project will require funding– mostly for ambitious research and writing. We’ll have advertising for those that offer writing aids designed to assist those who find it difficult or tiring to write neatly. We’re advertising-free now. Please do spread the word about DOPA.
Eric Van Buskirk, Publisher
July 26, 2017