Monday, March 19, 2012


…..What can I say……………When I got the invitation to attend the Rolls-Royce ‘Ride and Drive’ Event at Hotel Bel-Air  I suspected it might be tons of fun but I had nooooo idea!!!

Coincidentally, it was Tomiko’s birthday so what better way to celebrate than lunch at Wolfgang Puck’s restaurant there.  No matter the dessert, you have to have a candle!


Marcus, our delightfully charming server…..


Hmmmmmmmmmmmm this one is rather nice.


Or maybe this one…………………Yes, I like white!


Behind the wheel and adjusting my side mirrors.


Come on in………


I think I’ll put a down payment on this ‘Spirit of Ecstasy’.  We’ll discuss the car later.


I may not leave this ‘mini condo’. Could I possibly look more content?


The lovely Alyssa, Product Advocate for Rolls-Royce Motor Cars.  Ever since she was a little girl she loved cars and wanted to sell them.  Imagine that!


Tomiko had her turn at the wheel.


O.K., Tomiko come on, you have to get out now!


After our test drive of the ‘Ghost Extended Wheelbase’ we returned to the hotel lobby and plunked down on a sofa with treats in front of us.  The sandwiches to the left were so yummy (I had about 5 …O.K. 6….come on, they’re small!) and to the right was a tray with delicious cheeses.


Champagne anyone?  I don’t think we had more than three glasses, maybe four, and then there was the wine…but I lost count.  Coffee came for the ride home.  I shouldn’t even tell you this….it’s the main reason why I would never take a cruise……Every five minutes, a server came by with some delectable tidbit including about 7 slices of Wolfgang’s amazing pizza!  I’m certain that I waddled out of there because each time food was presented to us….I said YES!


Even the ladies room was a treat!


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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.