Thursday, February 11, 2016


 ….and right up there was a photo shoot at the Huntington Botanical Gardens with amazing photographer Martha Benedict.  You can see her stunning work at

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I am always amazed at the difference a professional photographer makes…...Nan 1201

 Sweet Cris from the Huntington…...

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It’s always a treat when Clara can be on my side of town.  (I can’t imagine anyone wanting to drive here from the Westside.)  As always, we were hungry and needing Pork Dumplings at Din Tai Fung!

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Love you Clara!

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Kung Fu Panda with Amy and Nikka…...What a perfect way to usher in the Chinese New Year.

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It way lovely on so many levels…..

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 “If you only do what you can do, you’ll never be better than what you are."

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You know I can never pass up a photo opportunity…...

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Play time at Nordstrom while waiting an hour for our reservation at Din Tai Fung.  Note to self:  Forget about Saturday night there….I think these two spotted me…..

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Too cute!

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 Off to Din Tai Fung and my very first Boba.  Imagine!  Soooo fun!!! …..

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Love their Garlic Green Beans and tried the yummy Sweet/Sour soup….

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These are quite possibly the best Pork Dumplings on the planet so we ordered another round…..

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Cuties Melody and Jean from Pirch came over to wish us a Happy Chinese New Year!IMG 0032

And we wish you the same!36a1ef48 e86d 4076 8267 7058570b4006


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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.