Sunday, February 8, 2015


………After John-David and Joy’s beautiful wedding things had to somewhat settle down.  Class was the very next day and it was beyond wonderful to have Ann with us again!

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 We worked on a lot but concentrated on the Iris.

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Kc brought delicious Pecan bars that were more like Pralines along with cookies……oh boy!

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All from The Ivy Bakery on Robertson….It’s worth a trip there for these goodies!IMG 4484

Thank you dear Diane for the flowers….always so welcome….

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Dr. Eileen really nailed the Iris….I’m so proud of her!!!

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It was an incredibly wonderful day so I have to show you how beautiful the sky was!

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After class I met Sandie Girl and Dr. Jim for dinner at Cafe Beaujolais, the wonderful French restaurant in Eagle Rock.  All the awesome French waiters have remained and I was delighted they remembered me!

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Not to break tradition I ordered the halibut…my favorite thru the years.  This photo doesn’t do it justice!

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What about dessert you ask?

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Super Bowl Sunday has Kita distracted by her nemesis, the Yorkie next door. 

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 We had to cordon her off to watch the game in peace on the large screen TV…….who’s getting the popcorn???

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Katy Perry had a pretty amazing half time show.  I just wish I had a photo of that crazy dancing shark!IMG 4534

 Next day I met artist Diane Karpel at Olive & Thyme in Toluca Lake on Riverside Drive. It's my new favorite place.  Foodies you must give it a try.  It’s a lot like Joan’s on 3rd.

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See……………so much good stuff!IMG 4547

Even their ladies room is cool…...IMG 4546


The next morning the fog rolled in perfectly and I was able to capture this scene thru the living room window. 6 A.M.! It looks like a painting!IMG 4568

Lunch with Trudy at Gourmet 88 to catch up on all the neighborhood news and see if there has been any more $1,500,000.000 robberies lately. Somehow we ordered incorrectly and instead of getting three separate entree’s we wound up with three lunch specials and three soups….too funny!

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 I couldn’t believe Dennis remembered me….gosh it’s been years since our weekly dinners there.

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Next day I took a selfie to occupy myself while waiting for friends at the Music Center.

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A private tour of the Founders room at the Dorothy Chandler…….IMG 4606

There are two of these beautiful 18th century Chinese lacquer chests…...IMG 4610

 One of the worker bees working on costumes for the current opera ‘Ghosts of Versailles’.

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 Finishing touches on a chair for the set….

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And here’s a shot of the set ……..IMG 4619

Salmon at Kendall’s Brasserie……doesn’t look good but it was perfect…...
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 Their apple crisp is always wonderful….might as well just dive in…..

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I’m absolutely in love with this Android commercial with all the animals…..hope you catch it on TV….

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I guess it had to happen.  Too much burning the candle……next day I had a fever and felt just awful.  Nikka had mentioned it to Amy so before you could say ‘stay in bed’ she came over with all manner of healing goodies.IMG 4653


First this concoction of Russian baking soda, sweet lemons (not Meyer), Perrier and only heaven knows what else.  My instructions were….”Shut your eyes and drink this”. I obeyed while thinking of Alice in Wonderland and that little bottle with the same instructions!IMG 4655


Amy then beautifully peeled three large pomegranates and I was told to have some (along with Nikka)…..They were yummy and things were looking up.IMG 4662


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My instructions were to avoid any and all regular food that day (no eggs or yogurt) but I could have any of the dried fruits along with the raw honey and special tea.  Oh, I almost forgot the Turmeric that I’m to put on everything! ……. The purpose was to cleanse my system.IMG 4654

Yet again Kita found herself cordoned off but I say she’s lucky to be spared …..

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I’m making light of all of this but the amazing thing is my fever broke within a couple of hours and by that evening I was feeling 100%.  I think Amy added a dollop of love which is always guaranteed to cure anything.  Thank you dear Amy for your loving care & concern!

Next day Amy came over to work with Nikka but first a little puppy play is required…...

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O.K. you two time for a break….IMG 4703

Still working…..

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Wishing you a beautiful week with lots of treats!

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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.