Monday, June 30, 2014


………has been dear to my heart for as long as I can remember.  Sandie Girl notice my ‘Winnie the Pooh’ book in the studio and commented about it.


Happily I said that “Pooh Bear’ has traveled through life with me and how much I love him….This was overheard by Diane Dennis who shocked and amazed us ……her husband Peter being THE official voice of Pooh! In fact he was ‘Pooh’s Ambassador Extraordinary’ having done audio recordings of the complete works of all the Pooh stories and that was what brought them to the States from England! Diane always carries a CD or two with her and gifted me with one. Now how amazing is that!!! Eileen, another Pooh addict, couldn’t wait and ordered the complete set on line during class. After class I went on line to the only official Winnie-The-Pooh website which is licensed to ‘Peter Dennis’ by the Pooh trustees….. where you can order all Pooh recordings. Even more delightful, all the CD’s have original E.H. Shepard drawings on them.


Can you even imagine how excited I am?  Diane brought the 10 Complete unabridged Stories and 44 Verses that I had ordered to class the following week!  She also brought this delightful pamphlet ‘A Short History of Winnie-the-Pooh & Friends’ written by Peter….oh joy!


I worked in the studio all afternoon and guess what I listened to????

“Isn’t it funny

How a bear likes honey!”

Here’s lovely Diane with Ava during class on Saturday.


And for more class ‘cute’…..Laurie Pie with Kc.


Ava noticed a little bug on the top of a cabinet and as promised, he was captured after class…


…..and released into the garden to live his little buggy life.  I just hope he doesn’t eat too much!


I must backtrack at this point.  On Monday I met Lizzie Girl at Panera Bread in NoHo for lunch.


As we share a deep love of Pooh, I gave Lizzie the CD from Diane (knowing I’d get the complete set in a few days.)  She was delighted and I felt wonderful. After lunch we saw the best, best movie….’Chef’ and loved all the fantastic food porn!



And so goes the week…’May you always be playing!’

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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.