Tuesday, March 6, 2012


…..in Santa Ana has such spectacular special exhibits that when Ann asked me if I’d like to go to the ‘WARRIORS TOMBS and TEMPLES’ exhibit I jumped at the chance.  As Ann is now retired (but active as ever in all manner of civic duties) and living in California City, the logistics and date were somewhat of a challenge.  We finally settled on the final week of the show and Ann picked me up for the hour’s ride which gave us a chance for  great fun catching up.IMG_0851

I loved seeing all the school children….IMG_0852

Some in uniforms…….


Here’s a group getting corralled ……no easy task as they waited in the lush mission-style courtyard with its fountains, shade trees and colorful flowers not to mention the singing rocks!


The signage was superb and the additional use of a head set helped immensely with all the information one had to absorb.


The timeline of the Qin, Han and Tang Dynasties


From the terra cotta army of Qin Shihuangdi


Another view…..


We loved this life-sized horse unearthed from the same tomb compound




Although numerous, the Han figures are much smaller than the Qin warriors, suggesting that the Han rulers symbolically demonstrated restraint & frugality.




Strike a pose Ann….


Lots of domestic animals but we loved the horses most of all!


A teacher lecturing her charges.


Another magnificent horse.


And again…..


Dig this gold dragon!!!




O.K., time for lunch!

TANGATA, the restaurant at the Bowers is one of the Patina group….need I say more?


I’m so happy, why is that man scowling?


Yummy choices………..


Hi Jessica…………more bread please………


This took the idea of a cobb salad to a whole new level.


Thank you so much Ann for the delicious treat.(Oh, did I mention the creme brulee?)  And for the great pleasure of your company!!!

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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.