I know, I know it seems that I am passionate about everything – blues, teapots, waves and dragons – and now I’ll add another thing that I just can’t live without – Paintbrushes! They are not just my tools of the trade, but also objects of art, history and tradition. I use them to paint – the very fine ones are made of squirrel, ox or pony hair – and also when I make my own paper. I use the larger, hard brushes made of hog’s hair to brush and beat down the mulberry paper once a strata has been added with my glue mixture, in order to stretch out the paper on the canvas.

Paintbrushes for making paper canvases

Paintbrushes for making paper canvases

I have been painting for years with Chinese paintbrushes that I bought in Hong Kong. The handles are made out of bamboo and although many of my favorite shops were closed down the last time I went to Hong Kong, there is still the culture of entire shops dedicated to paintbrushes – a true painter’s paradise!

Paintbrushes in my studio

Paintbrushes in my studio