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Year of the Rabbit with Phillip Xu - January 14th, 2023

Phillip Xu began his workshop on the rabbit by displaying a handout that showed how to paint the rabbit in steps. Yan Wang translated for Phillip Xu as some of our artists do not understand Chinese.

Test the ink on your brush before painting, Phillip Xu advised.

A series of lines showed how to achieve a dry brush stroke which is more effective than a wet brush.

This rock becomes more like a rock with the dry brush.

Begin the rabbit with the head including the nose and the prominent rabbit teeth.

Rabbit ears are long.

Then outline the body of the rabbit.

Leave some of the eye unpainted to indicate reflected light.

Then Phillip Xu added darker ink to highlight the rabbit paws and back.

More dark ink defined the ears and tail.

The front of the painting was made with a dry side brush that conveyed a rough mountain side.

The grass about the rabbit was added.

Phillip Xu told the artists about the Jade Rabbit and the Moon Goddess, Chang'e, from Chinese mythology. Did you know that the rocket that China sent to the moon was named after the Moon Goddess and the rover was named after the Jade Rabbit?

Leaves were the start of a tree over the rabbit.

Leaves of different sizes, shapes and shades brought the tree to life.

Orange berries were carefully painted. You want clusters of berries that are not too identical and symmetrical.

More leaves were hung just before the rabbit.

Dark ink made the grass more life like.

The eye was coloured with pink ink.

This rabbit seemed ready to hop into the room

It was our turn to paint the rabbit along with Phillip Xu's help.

Artists were attracted to painting the rabbit.

Phillip Xu was impressed.

Calligraphy added the date of the painting: the winter of the year of the tiger which precedes the year of the rabbit in the Chinese zodiac.

Phillip Xu's seal completed the painting.

Thank you Phillip Xu for showing us how to paint the rabbit, and teaching us about the Jade Rabbit and the Moon Goddess, Chang'e. Thank you Yan Wang for translating.