Monday, January 16, 2017



…..TYRUS WAS a ‘DISNEY LEGEND’ for his ground breaking concept artwork on ‘BAMBI’ but that only skims the surface of his many accomplishments attested to by the hundreds who came to pay tribute to him on Friday at Forest Lawn’s ‘Hall of Liberty’. The hall was packed with nary a dry eye.

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In this photo, Tyrus is holding one of his exquisite hand made kites which he would fly on the beach at Santa Monica the 4th Saturday of each month.  There were kites of swallows, butterflies, panda bears, centipedes and more. As you will note, 106 years, each packed with adventure, creativity and meaning!IMG 9967

With awesome Pam Tom at the Santa Monica beach. No one who witnessed one of these amazing adventures would ever forget it!
IMG 4719Tyrus’ daughter Kim was always the #1 assistant! The Butterflies will soon be aloft to flutter in the breeze!IMG 47363

Love the Panda!

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While the ceremony was incredibly moving, touching both heart and soul, the joy was found in knowing that here was a life well spent, a template for joyful living.  Tyrus found joy in everything and that joy was palpable, felt by anyone who knew him.

IMG 9965I’m beyond description proud of Pam Tom, writer, producer and director, who through sheer dent of purpose and courage finished the documentary of ’TYRUS: BRUSHSTROKES IN HOLLYWOOD’. It was always such great fun to be at one of the fundraisers for the film!

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 If you don’t see the film sooner, you’ll get a chance this summer when it’s featured on PBS.  I know many of you saw the moving tribute to Tyrus on last weeks CBS Sunday Morning Show. (If not, I recorded it, come over & I’ll make some popcorn!)

Pam’s tribute to Tyrus was so beautiful and her description of how she first discovered this National Treasure was in watching BAMBI with her daughter, noticing his Chinese name was one of those ‘meant to be’ moments!

IMG 9978Awesome Lisa See was featured in the documentary speaking of Tyrus and along with Pam, her tribute brought out the kleenex! Afterwards, it was especially meaningful for everyone to be able to give our heartfelt condolences to Kim, Tai Ling and Kay, Tyrus’ loving daughters.

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My mind drifted back to Tyrus visiting my studio.  A day I shall never forget!



Even the sky was incredibly beautiful all throughout the day in tribute to Tyrus...

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Thank you Tyrus for making your life a work of art!

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Thursday, January 5, 2017


….so what better way to begin the New Year than by reading ‘The Book of Joy’, conversations with the Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu.  The overriding sense one gets is that they are both mischievous as can be and perhaps that’s the secret.

IMG 9670It sure works for Snoopy!

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……and the Peanuts gang!

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…and certainly Kita who doesn’t mind fooling around any chance she gets!!

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 With this commitment to remaining joyful I was determined to see the major water damage in the studio as an amazing project helped by angels Dr. Eileen and David.

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Actually David pronounced it quite an exciting project and I’m delighted for that!

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Hmmmmmm……I think I’ll leave now. Joyfully of course!

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O.K., the mail truck was robbed with our mail and packages in it.  Kita is hot on the trail….IMG 9689

 Gratefully my Christmas gift from Harvard wasn’t taken!

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  Our first business meeting with awesome Judy was great fun. The Nan Rae staff is growing!

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 How cute is this!  Welcome Judy to Nan Rae Fine Art!!!

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It’s a tradition in the Philippines to have 12 fruits for the New Year……...IMG 9722

 Yes Lisa, you’re right…….I’m one tired puppy!

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 Mom is quite the trooper staying until the ball dropped at midnight!

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 Welcome 2017, may it contain great joy and everything you would wish for!

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 I wish for you the dearest  things

Long summertimes and endless  springs

A happy heart that always sings
And angels on your pillow  

All the joys that love can give
As long as there is life to live
A peaceful mind to give you rest
And angels on your pillow
Someone there at journey's end
Someone who's a faithful friend
Love beginning without end
And angels on your pillow 

Cool breezes when you want a breeze
And blessings always when you sneeze
To come and go the way you please
And angels on your pillow 
Lyrics: Peggy Lee

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Thursday, December 29, 2016


…began joyfully with Clara and Penny treating me to lunch at the Peninsula's Roof Garden.

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One of my favorite things there is this adaptation of a Root Beer Float made with Ginger Beer!  Delicious!!!IMG 9371

Thank you dear Clara and Penny for the delightful time and the very special gifts!IMG 9373

Well I was right there at the Spa wasn’t I?  And I needed to relax, didn’t I? A massage was called for….right?  Right on all the above.IMG 9375

 Now I ask you, what’s the point of getting all relaxed and then driving back to the Valley on Coldwater during rush hour traffic? Correct?  No point.  Besides, after a good massage one can hardly walk let along get dressed and drive so dinner in the Relaxation Room was in order. (Besides, I had brought a good book to read.)

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 It was already dark outside as I headed towards home but not before I stopped to admire the Peninsula’s beautiful Christmas trees!

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 The next day’s class at the Huntington was wonderful as always and we had great fun getting ready for the Year of the Rooster!  Of course that was after a brief time of torture studying the Chinese Orchid! 

IMG 9450We had a sugar high at lunch as everyone brought Christmas treats to share.  Here’s Dear Maggie’s wonderful tray of home made goodies.  She’s amazing!

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Dr. Eileen came over with Christmas treats and had a great time teaching Kita to behave.  We’ll just add her name to the list of folks who came before her with the same fine intention.  I must say she did a good job and that’s due to her having horses and many dogs in her life! 

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 Oh well…… much for behaving!

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 Yeah, you’re good now…….

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 Christmas eve finally came, the table was set, gifts out and ready to be torn open and dinner was being prepared. I just didn’t hang the stockings on the chimney this year.

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 Vicki turned her back so I was able to get to the stove and stir a pot…..

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 Mary Beth, Kita’s trainer, always sends this wonderful basket of fruit for Christmas.  This year it arrived just as we were about to sit down for dinner...

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 Love you darling….Merry Christmas!

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 Mom made a huge effort to be with us and we were so grateful!

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 You can see parts of the fruit basket are missing.  The strawberries dipped in chocolate are amazing and along with the chocolate covered pineapple were the first to go.

IMG 9652May 2017 bring you countless sweet things and joy always!

Sunday, December 25, 2016


…...including carolers and a fine Santa!

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This would make anyone jolly!


I know, amazing!DSCN2582

…..and oh soooo good!

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Let’s start with dessert!

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Cheese anyone?

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…and what would you like to drink?

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Not sure what I was carrying on about here but I did want you to see Amy’s beautiful flowers!

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Delighted to see Nan Rae collectors Diane and Page…...

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Amy loved Jo Ann as much as I do!

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Time out with Prince…..

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Me too!

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Hmmmm…wonder whose orchids those are???

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Our hostess with the mostest with Amy’s beautiful flowers and sister Vanya to the right…..

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Delightful always to see artiste extraordinaire Peter Adams!

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Thank you dear Valerie for an amazing, memorable evening!

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Well, the evening was still young and we wanted to have tea so Amy & I headed over to The Langham which used to be the Ritz Carlton.  I always love going there and seeing the courtyard where Charles and I were married.

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Guess what Amy is holding in her free hand.

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Here’s a big clue…..

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There was a long line at the valet station and we had to wait 30 minutes for my car so…...

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I thought I’d end this blog with another beautiful tree…..this one’s from The Peninsula.IMG 9381

May your holiday be all bright and sparkling!


There is no avoiding the pull of the internet, the blogs, the YouTube imaginings. It's as if we're all 'On the Road' with Jack Kerouac each in our own world of meanderings. When we tell someone to 'get a life' it might be a bit difficult when you're dragged into other people's 24/7.

I've come to realize two foundational principals, there are no accidents and everyone has a purpose. More and more I'm desiring everyone to come into a full realization of their purpose as we all find our way on this little jewel of a planet.

For me, as a professional 'Western style artist', I stumbled into Chinese Brush Painting after a trip in 1980 to Monet's home/garden. Seeing all of his collection of Japanese woodblock prints was an ahh haa moment for me and when I returned to the States I started painting in the Chinese manner and never looked back. The first year was extremely painful for me as I felt that I should be able to master the technique since I was a 'trained' artist. Not a chance ... that just gets in your way.

Now, after teaching close to 3,000 students and having my book 'The Ch'i of the Brush' published by Watson Guptill, I can say that every one of my students does better their first day than I did my first year! Why? Because I insist that they leave their critical parent outside and just enjoy the journey, respecting the work that they do. I never let anyone throw anything away because that just ingrains frustration and defeat.

We really only begin to learn when we stop and figure out how to 'save' a painting. It works every time.I am so proud of my students, their receptivity and eagerness to express themselves is a continuing blessing for me.So, back to finding your purpose. Perhaps it starts with realizing 'it's not about me'. It so easy to want our needs met and to filter everything thru this attitude. When we realize that we're here to be of benefit to every life that we touch the universe really provides the ways and means.

The best part is that it's really exciting to not have yourself on your mind all the time!I'm re-reading a wonderful book about authenticity and in my next meandering I'll tell you about it. In the meantime I'd love to hear about your journey and am here to answer any and all questions about Chinese Brush Painting.