Celebrating Chinese New Year - Brush Painting

by Tricia Morrissey, Dec 27, 2005 | Destinations: China / Beijing

Chinese brush paintings decorate each page of this book. If you look closely, you will see the painter's strokes. This style of painting has been practiced in China for over 6,000 years.

Traditional Chinese artists paint human figures, landscapes, birds and flowers. Painters use their brushes and paints to show how the bird's feathers feel silky, how the waterfall pours down the mountain and sprays the trees, and how the court lady's steps are graceful and elegant.

An artist will sometimes complement his or her painting by writing a poem next to the picture. Written in calligraphy, the poem may explain the painting's theme, share the artist's reason for painting the picture, or reveal the name of the person who will receive the painting.

After the painting and the calligraphy are finished, the artist will sign the painting by adding a seal. Seals are stamps made by carving Chinese characters into stone or wood. The characters on the seal may be the artist's name, a traditional saying, or the painting's theme. The artist dips the seal in scarlet red paint and presses it to the paper. Adding a red seal to a black and white painting is called "adding the eye to the dragon."


A New Year's Legend
New Year's Traditions
Flowers & Plants
Eating Together
Lion Dance
Tray of Happiness
Red Envelopes
Lantern Festival
Chinese Calligraphy
Chinese Brush Painting