Archive for the tag 'bamboo'

Learn Chinese Brush Painting with Ning Yeh

November 16th, 2007


bio_horse.jpgbio_horse.jpgbio_horse.jpgNing Yeh was born in China into a family with a renowned artistic tradition for generations. His father, an army general, was renowned for horse painting. He was given the name Ning, meaning tranquility, to celebrate the end of the Second World War. Ning Yeh’s art training started when he was seven, after the family moved to Taiwan in 1949. His daily practice included the Four Gentlemen (plum, orchid, bamboo and mum) and calligraphy. At the age of fifteen, the focus of his training turned to horse painting, his family tradition. He proceeded with floral and landscape paintings and gradually developed his own style. Ning was a good student in high school; he became the university draft choice in 1964 and enrolled in the school of diplomacy.

In 1969, the State Department invited the young artist to come to California for an exhibition tour. Ning Yeh accepted scholarships and subsequently received his Ph.D. degree in Asian Studies and Government at Claremont Graduate School.

Dr. Yeh began teaching both Social Sciences and Brush Painting in 1972. Nixon’s visit to China prompted Dr. Yeh to make the decision to focus on his art and left his aspirations of being a diplomat behind. He became a full-time art professor and in Orange County, California, he developed one of the most extensive Chinese Brush Painting programs in the United States. He was three times the recipient of the National Teaching Excellence Award, among many other teaching honors. He started the American Artists of Chinese Brush Painting (AACBP), which grew to 500 members strong and began to lead tours of American Artists to Taiwan and continued to China as China began opening to the West. His extensive travel through all parts of China made him an adviser to China Tourism Office.

In 1978, Dr. Yeh published his first book, “The Art of Chinese Brush Painting.” In 1987, Dr. Yeh starred in Coastline College’s first instructional television series Chinese Brush Painting with Ning Yeh. The series won the Emmy award for Best Instructional Series and was aired nationally on the Learning Channel. He also authored two additional books, “Chinese Brush Painting: An Instructional Guide” and an album entitled, “Eighty Paintings and Ideas.” 1991 saw the release of Dr. Yeh’s fourth book, “A.B.C. of Chinese Painting.” His instructional books are the best sellers with repeated editions.

He also embarked on the ambitious project to produce instructional TV series on his own. In 1997, Chinese Flower Painting with Ning Yeh was released for a run on the PBS station KOCE. True to his original intent, Dr. Yeh did everything himself, filming, editing, starring, and directing the series.

In 1996, Weyerhaeuser, one of the largest forest products companies, approached Dr. Yeh to be the featured artist for an international ad campaign. Over the next decade, Dr. Yeh and his artwork have been featured prominently in national television commercials as well as ads in the Wall Street Journal, Time, Newsweek and many other national publications. In 2005, Weyerhaeuser invited Dr. Yeh to fly over Mt. St. Helen and commissioned him to do a painting to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the once dormant volcano’s eruption. In a dynamic landscape piece, Dr. Yeh paid tribute to the work that Weyerhaeuser has done in replanting the forests originally destroyed by the eruption.

In the late 90s, Dr. Yeh continued his prolific filmmaking as he released Chinese Flower Painting 2. His skill as an artist, filmmaker, and instructor continue to develop and manifest themselves in his best received series ever.

In the new millennium, Dr. Yeh releases his fourth television series entitled Chinese Animal Painting.

Taking pause to look back on Dr. Yeh’s career and body of work, it is apparent that he did not abandon his aspirations of being a diplomat. Rather Dr. Yeh has used his artwork as a bridge to encourage mutual appreciation and exchange between the East and the West. This blending of cultures and understandings can be seen in his career and his artwork. He is a cultural ambassador between the East and the West.

Dr. Yeh continues his work deepening and broadening his role as an artist, teacher, author, filmmaker, traveler and cultural ambassador. He lives and maintains his studio in Huntington Beach, California. He is a loving husband to his wife and business partner of nearly 40 years Ling Chi and is a dedicated father to his two children Evan and Ja-Shin.

Orchid Painting

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Learn Chinese Brush Painting with Jane Evans

November 15th, 2007

Chinese brush painter Jane Evans learned some new techniques from artist Qu Lei Lei and incorporated them into her own style to create more expressive bamboo.


For the basic blunt bone stroke that forms each section of the stem, pick up thick ink, not too wet, from the stone along the side of the brush head only. Place the tip of the brush onto the paper and press down lightly. Then move the brush upwards along its bristles, working in the direction the plant grows. pausing and pressing slightly before lifting off at the end of the stroke. The last stroke should be tapered. The hit and miss effect, known as “flying white” helps to give shape and texture. Reinforce the joints with thick black ink. Carry the line slightly outside the stem and reinforce one side by flicking the stroke.


Use a large orchid and bamboo brush. Remember leaves seen side-on will appear narrower and immature leaves will tend to be smaller. To paint each cluster, fill the brush with liquid black ink and taper the tip on the paper then immediately reverse it.
Without slackening speed, lower the brush gradually onto the paper, then smoothly taper it off again. Caress the paper rather than ‘snatching’ at the stroke. Adding wet to wet enhances the vigour and liveliness of the painting, but always paint light leaves after the dark ones to allow the dark ones to blur in places. If you put dark leaves on top of light ones, everything would run into an amorphous blob.
Once the leaves are finished join on stray clusters with extra side stems, which always grow from a joint.

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