Monday, December 16, 2013

I worked on Cardinals about a year ago in Darlene Kaplan's class and was so frustrated. Then I painted them again about 6 months ago in Hsi-Mei's class. Still Frustrated. This past Saturday Hsi-Mei covered them again. I believe I'm finally starting to get the hang of it. Doing the strokes over and over really does help. The best part about a blog is I control what I show you. All of my mistakes turn 
into wrapping paper. I have a lot of wrapping paper. 

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Chinese Brush Art Christmas Card - Silent Night

I am back !!!   After a long sabbatical, I have returned to the studio - where I belong.  And, just in time for our first Winter's storm (maybe).  I finished our 2013 Christmas card just in time.  I hope you like it.  I call it "Silent Night".  I studied snow in Henry Wo Yue-Kee's class and it was the inspiration for the snow in this painting.  I studied the birds in Hsi-mei Yates' class.  It's a nice combination, don't you think?

This is my third Chinese Brush Art Christmas Card.  Last year's card was a cardinal.  The year before was a poinsettia.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013


I was inspired by Henry Wo Yue-Kee's painting, Sparrows in Autumn. In Chinese brush painting we are taught to copy the works of the masters. I believe the lesson keeps one humble because you realize how hard it is and how great they are and how many strokes they have brushed in a life time.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

I saw Humming Birds at my brothers cottage while up in northern Wisconsin. I was so happy when the first subject in Hsi-Mei's class was Humming Birds.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Sunday, July 28, 2013


Going to Wisconsin this week after our month long trip. I've always been inspired by the pair of loons on Witches Lake in Wisconsin. I hope to see a few while I'm there. Danny Chen's painting of ducks and loons influenced my ability to paint these loons. Sometimes, you need a little help.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Goldfish worked on in Henry's class

We did 10 different subjects in Henry's classes.  This was done on the 4th day and was the 8th subject - goldfish.  This was one of my favorite classes.  He taught us how to paint the illusion of water which helps bring the fish to life.  

How wonderful to spend 25 hours with a Chinese Master and learn so much in such a brief period of time.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Henry Wo Yue -Ke

This past week I had the privilege of taking a chinese brush painting class sponsored by the Sumi-e Society. The teacher was the famous Henry Wo Yue-Kee. He has been painting for over 70 years. He paints like he breathes. Almost instinctual. His work is so incredibly beautiful. He was a wonderful teacher. I hope to finish some of the paintings we worked on this week. I need to get some new art work up.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

A Lazy Afternoon of Painting

My husband, the romantic, called this 'the anticipation of their first kiss'.  I enjoyed a few hours alone in my little home studio where the paint and ink just seemed to flow.

Earlier in the weekend I went to a reception in Vienna Virginia at The Frame Factory for 14 artists from the Workhouse Studio 5 in Occoquan were displaying their art.  You can find more information about the Workhouse Arts Center HERE

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Chinese Master Brush Artist

On Wednesday I had the privilege of observing a Chinese master brush artist pen named Tao-zhi (Duan Guan-zhi).  The National Capital Area Chapter of the Sumi-e Society of America sponsored the event.  Tao-zhi is one of only a few Chinese master artists.  He painted a beautiful landscape for us.  He choreographed his painting like a dancer.  He made it look effortless.

Thursday, May 9, 2013


The inspiration for these butterflies came from a visit to our daughter Bond's in Florida.  We were antique shopping in St. Augustine, Florida and found some truly beautiful framed antique French butterfly paintings.  After seeing the beauty in those paintings,  I just had to have some butterflies of my own.  

The original signed version of this Chinese Brush Art painting in a beautiful frame is still available.  Leave me a comment with your e-mail address if you are interested in purchasing it. 4" x 6" reproduction cards and envelopes are also available for $12.50 (package of 5) mailed anywhere in the U.S.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Bonsai Festival at the National Arboretum

I had a wonderful time at the Potomac Bonsai Festival held at the National Arboretum in Washington, D.C. from 3-5 May.  It was fun to get reacquainted with the many great artists and artisans whom I had not seen in two years (I missed last year's event).  The bonsai tree in the photo is one of many on display at the festival.  If you missed this festival and still have an interest in bonsai, then don't miss the Open House: World Bonsai Day at the National Arboretum on May 11, 10:00 am – 4:00 pm.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Follow the leader

Ten years in Japan will have an affect on anyone.  Koi captured my attention the first time we were there and I have been fascinated ever since.  I took our son Michael to the department store every day and he shares my love of this uniquely strong Japanese fish.  Michael and I always swim against the current and it has made us both stronger.  It should be no surprise that Koi represent strength for the Japanese people.  This original artwork will be at the Potomac Bonsai Festival from 3-5 May at the National Arboretum in Washington DC.  I hope to see you there. 

The original signed version of this Chinese Brush Art painting in a beautiful frame is available.  Leave me a comment with your e-mail address if you are interested in purchasing it. 4" x 6" reproduction cards and envelopes are also available for $12.50 (package of 5) mailed anywhere in the U.S.

Thursday, April 25, 2013


It's been a while since I have posted.  I have been getting ready for the Potomac Bonsai Festival at the National Arboretum in Washington DC.  The festival is from Friday, 3 May through Sunday, 5 May.  These peonies have me in the mood for Spring.  How about you?

Thursday, April 18, 2013

One of my influences, a great teacher.

In this lesson, we were learning brush strokes to paint bamboo.  I like to learn as many different brush techniques as I can.  Each Chinese Brush Art teacher has a unique way of teaching and I like that.  Variety is good.  A lot of variety is even better.  I have been fortunate to have some very good teachers.  I have particularly enjoyed my time with Hsi-mei.  She has been a very positive influence in my learning process.  She has helped me grow as an artist through her patience and encouragement.  Thank you, Hsi-mei.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Laura's Iris

We had some friends visit from Orlando, FL for the final days of the Washington DC cherry blossom festival.  It's always fun to have friends over to the house, especially in the Spring when we can spend some time outside.  I also had a chance to show them my little art studio and some of my Chinese Brush Art progress.  Laura really liked my iris painting so I have named these Laura's Iris.  Thanks so much for visiting Laura, Josh and Teresa.  It was wonderful to see you.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Magestic Koi

I just finished this new Koi painting.  I've come a long way from my first Koi two years ago.  This painting took me three days to complete.  The actual size of the painting is about 17" x 23".   I think a painting of this size and complexity would probably sell for about $375.00 framed.  I am taking this to the Potomac Bonsai Festival at the National Arboretum in Washington DC from 3-5 May.  Hope to see you there.

The original signed version of this Chinese Brush Art painting in a beautiful frame is available.  Leave me a comment with your e-mail address if you are interested in purchasing it. 4" x 6" reproduction cards and envelopes are also available for $12.50 (package of 5) mailed anywhere in the U.S.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Washington DC Cherry Blossoms

I was in Washington DC with a great friend, Harriet, this morning.  It was a perfect Spring day and the blossoms were beautiful which I hope you can see from this painting.  I used five different brushes to complete this piece of Chinese Brush Art.

It was an inspirational morning.  Thousands of people were  admiring the gift from the Japanese people.  The Washington DC Cherry Blossom Festival is in full swing.  You can find out more about it HERE.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Waiting for warm weather so my flowers will grow.

I painted these geraniums last summer while on my patio. I'm counting the days till I can do that again. Will it ever get warm?

Tuesday, April 2, 2013


This little corner of brushes is in a pie safe that I bought in Japan. These are what I would call my "garbage" brushes. They are set aside because I don't use them every day anymore.  Maybe I'll never use them again. But, they all served their purpose in their time. They account for many hundreds of brush strokes on my way to 10,000 brush strokes in search of that one 'perfect stroke'.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Happy Easter 2013

I was talking to some great friends and one suggested that I do a rabbit for Easter so I took her advice and here goes.  Thanks Pam.  Peter Cottontail was hopping down the bunny trail and stopped here briefly for a quick Chinese Brush Art portrait.  I hope I have done you justice Peter.

Friday, March 29, 2013

101 years of Washington DC Cherry Blossoms

This is a wonderful time of the year in the Washington D.C. area.   Every year, local residents and hundreds of thousands of visitors enjoy the National Cherry Blossom Festival, especially along the Tidal Basin near the Thomas Jefferson Memorial.  This festival  commemorates the 1912 gift of 3,000 cherry trees from Mayor Yukio Ozaki of Tokyo to the city of Washington, DC. This very special gift and annual celebration honor the lasting friendship between the United States and Japan and the continued close relationship between the people of these two countries.  

Having spent more than 9 years in Japan on three different occasions, the cherry blossoms carry special meaning and emotion for me.  This is an example of one of my Chinese Brush Art painting of some local cherry blossoms.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Koi - First Chinese Brush Art Painting I Sold

Koi represent strength and perseverance.
This is the first Chinese Brush Art painting that I sold.  I participated in the Potomac Bonzai Festival at the United States National Arboretum on New York Avenue in Washington D.C. in  2011.  I was honored to have the President of the Potomac Bonzai Association purchase my work.  This is an annual festival and the next one is scheduled for 3, 4 and 5 May 2013.  Hope to see you there.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013


This is my first attempt at a pheasant. There were more brush strokes than I would care to count.  If I came close to 10,000 strokes the pheasant should be perfect.  But, I didn't.

Monday, March 25, 2013


This particular watercolor was inspired by friends of thirty years, The Wilsons of Leesburg, Virginia.  We've shared countless bottles of fine wine and great conversations over the years.  As with my other Chinese Brush Art works, this is only the beginning.  Like a fine wine, I hope my works will improve with age and practice.  Imagine these grapes after 10,000 brush strokes of practice !!

Sunday, March 24, 2013


This is one of my first attempts at painting a goldfish.  The hardest part of painting the fish is getting the fins to look natural as if they were flowing in the water.  I'm not quite there yet.  But I keep trying and that's the important part to remember.

My Journey Into Chinese Brush Art

I started Chinese Brush Art about 2 years ago.  My first paintings were what you might expect from someone just beginning.  This blog is about that journey of 10,000 practice strokes in search of that one 'perfect stoke'.  And like my Chinese Brush Art journey, this is my first post of 10,000 on the way to the 'perfect' post.