Tuesday, April 23, 2013


Christene is a docent at the Huntington as well as a student and delightful friend.  Emma is her talented and quite charming daughter.

Friday Christene & I went to a lecture on wild flowers in California at the Huntington.


It was fascinating to hear how important the wildflowers were to the native Americans in California.


Seeds were passed around for us to smell and examine.


They were small but mighty!


The woman is holding a ‘digging stick’.


……..and here’s one that was passed around.  Guess I’m all set to go digging for dinner!


More seeds……………….


Time to hunt and gather………


Or perhaps time for tea…….


……..what a lovely spot to sit back, enjoy our beverages and watch the assorted peeps and birds go by……..


Fun to take a photograph of someone taking a photograph!


This fellow looks to be quite serious about his photographs….no iPhone stuff for him!


Capturing the moment…..


Going back to the previous Tuesday evening,  Christene’s daughter Emma & I went to the Pantages to hear Anthony Bourdain, author of Kitchen Confidential and a dozen or so other books.  I just don’t understand why no one else wanted to go as he’s #1 terrific in my book…gosh I posted it on Facebook …..Oh well!050

We got to the Pantages sooooo early (eager with anticipation) that I thought a hot dog was in order….this little place is right next door.  When we left it was jammed. 


Decided to split this ham creation instead.  Yes, it was yummy!


Anthony, or ‘Uncle Tony’ as Emma calls him, was sharing the stage with Roy Choi of the KOGI BBQ Taco Trucks fame.  They bantered back and forth and opened to a question & answer time.069

This doesn’t show you much so you’ll just have to take my word that it was TERRIFIC!!!060

Afterwards, Christene picked Emma up at my mom’s….a favorite meeting spot!068

To be continued…….

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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.