Category Archives: Chinese Brush Painting


HAPPY LUNAR NEW YEAR OF THE ROOSTER!  People born in the Year of the Rooster are deep thinkers, determined, busy & talented.  Although they can be a bit eccentric & self-centered, they are always interesting & brave.  Often Rooster people are moody & loners, but they are capable of being a loyal friend.  

“Kung Hei Fat Choy” means Congratulations & Prosperity & is the greeting of good wishes for Chinese New Year.  You can follow this with “May you enjoy good health” & “May your million wishes be fulfilled!”  Red envelopes called Lai See, are given to children with “lucky” money.  Long strips of red paper with written expressions of wishes for a long life, prosperity &a successful career are hung on doorways.  A red scroll with the New Year’s ghost hunter God Zhong Kui are hung on household gates as a guardian spirit.  Zhong Kui is a vanquisher of ghosts & evil beings & reputedly able to command 80,000 demons. He is often shown with a bat for prosperity & scrolls with him are hung in businesses.

Fireworks & the red paper scrolls are to scare off Nian, a beast that preyed on people the night before New Year.  Red is the color of the day to wear & to decorate your home. Drangon & Lion dances are good omens to repel demons & evil & to bring good luck.  

A dinner is served symbolizing abundance & wealth.  Each of the corses signifies a good wish for happiness, good luck or prosperity.  A “Prosperity Tray” is an 8–sided tray containing:  Pomegranates & Lotus Seeds = Future fertility & prosperity, Grapefruit/Oranges/Tangerines = Wealth & Abundance, Sugarcane = Enticing the Kitchen Goods to say nice things about you, Fish = The word for fish “Yu” sounds the same as the word for “plentiful”, Chicken = A stand-in for the Pheonix bird, which signifies re-birth, Dumplings = Resemble gold nuggets for prosperity, Oysters = Good Business wishes.  A Chinese rice-cake is served to wish you growth & good wishes in the coming years.

 The festival lasts 15 days & the Lantern Festival marks the end of Chinese New Year.  Rooster & Zhong Kui paintings are my Chinese brush paintings.  The photo is a some lucky scrolls to wish you “Kung Hei Fat Choy”  MAY YOUR MILLION WISHES BE FULFILLED!


At a brush painting workshop recently, I was enjoying looking at how each person kept their paintbrushes & paints in different ways.  The teacher that demonstrated that day unrolled his brushes & he probably had a hundred of them!  One person just has her brushes in a blue & white jar & another one has her brushes securely attached in a bamboo brush holder.  Since these brushes can cost $50 each, it pays to take good care of our sacred tools.  I really liked the little porcelain dishes jumbled up in a box with chips of Chinese paint in them!  Part of the ritual of brush painting is to set up our paints prior to painting and obtaining a peaceful mindset.  I cherish my brushes & paints as they allow me a freedom of expression all my own.

Sacred Tools 6-2014 WATERMARK

Mountains in the Clouds – Japanese brush painting

Mountain & Clouds triptec 3-2015 WATERMARK


Three small paintings of mountains, clouds, pine trees & a tea house.  Japanese brush paintings 5″ x 12″ each.