Chinese Bamboo

Chinese BambooTonight’s painting class features the ever popular subject Chinese Bamboo. It is made of four parts – the pole, the joints, the branches, and the leaves. To paint our bamboo we will be using the “wipe stroke” and learning the “bone” stroke.

The leaves may look similar to other strokes we have done but they are unique. They are made by landing the brush on the paper then slowly moving your arm (not your wrist) then lifting the brush off the paper. The grouping of leaves have wonderful names like moored boat, new moon, swallow tail, and landing geese to name a few. If you paint the leaves going in the same general direction with a gentle curve you give the impression of leaves blowing in the wind. Chinese Bamboo is not the easiest subject we have painted but with plenty of practice the results can be beautiful.

While bamboo is wonderful all by itself many paintings incorporate other elements. Landscape artists often include mountains in the background. Other paintings include birds and animals. The painting above includes a simple bird. The body is made from a “wipe” stoke. The head is made from bamboo leaf strokes. I’ll be demonstrating how to paint a simple baby panda in class.

Until next time…keep those pencils sharp!


P.S. Interested in seeing more bamboo paintings? Check out the bamboo greeting cards in my art shop.