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God Will Help Someone Who Helps Herself -- Shirley's US Travel Diary -074 & 402nd Friendly Greeting May 19, 2013

Hi,Dear Friends

How are you? :-)

This is the third letter that I wrote to you in City of Pikeville, KY, USA.

Until 3:00pm., May 12, 2013, the first phase of my art exhibition ( 4 times for 12 hours) was finished, 10 of my paintings were sold within the 12 hours and the last 5 paintings of them were sold in the last 3 hours. :-)

Then, May 13 to 17, 2013, in the past 5 days, I offered 9 times and 21 free vocal poetry and painting classes for the local adults and teenagers at 3 schools and a hotel. More than 300 person-times attended my classes.

You can see my art exhibition and classes in Pikeville City, KY, USA via the link.

During the process, I have gotten some new impressions on the City and the local American people:

-- I do feel that the people here have very high educational level, everyone I met at my art exhibition, schools or at hotel are polite, gentle and elegant. The 10 paintings were just bought by the local professors, art teacher, pastor, lawyer, officers and so on.

-- People here have very open minds to study foreign culture. I am just a full time student from Chinese National Academy of Arts, but in my audiences, include professors of history, art and psychology; art teachers; high school language and history teachers, artists, doctors and university students. Their strong thirst for the knowledge and their helpful talking with me often give me inspirations and strength to work harder.

-- Management level here is quite high. Whole of the city is clean, convenient, comfortable and full of the vitality. As the only Chinese at the hotel and a guest who comes here first time, I do feel everything is easy to deal with. If I wish to drink, there are some automatic vending machines by the roads or in the parking lots. If I want to eat, just I wandered in the streets, then I would find somewhere to eat within 10 or 15 minutes. :-) If I want to have a visiting, there is an information office for tourists at the hotel and also there are museum, theatre, expo center and church that can be reached by walking... :-)

-- Except I have felt strong religion atmosphere in the city, I am impression on the local people paying more attention to the education of their children.

Every morning at the school, I found many parents sent their children to go to their schools in person, just like many Chinese parents do in China.

The most direct thing I have seen: Mrs. Leigh Ann Hughes who is the Grant Administer of the city, she accompanied me to work in the schools and at the expo center always, then she caught her work in her office overtime, however, still she keeps sending her children going to the school every morning, to say I Love You to each child before they going out of her car, even she did not forget to buy the fresh food and to send to a child who has a picnic in a noon...

The strong love among family members, and the wonderful friendship that is appeared among the local people from their naturally dear actions, let me have some new and more direct understanding why the nation of America has a so strong cohesion no matter what has happened to their country. :-)

Even thought it is the last week of the university and schools, still many students attended my free Vocal Chinese Painting and Poetry Classes. The original planned 11 lessons on the poster have been changed to be 21, then I will offer another added 6 lessons next week before I leave for China.

It was the first time, in the City of Pikeville, Kentucky, USA, May, 2013, I have had an opportunity to teach more than 300 personal times to learn Chinese classical poems in Tang dynasty (618 - 907), to paint Chinese paintings in Song Dynasty ( 9601127), to introduce something little, but from the peaks of Chinese traditional art of poetry and paintings via the help of my own music and so on. To help American people to touch some ^ True  ̄ Chinese traditional cultures.

When I said ^True ̄, because before I went to China Centre Academy of Fine Arts and Chinese National Academy of Arts, I did much work to do the similar jobs in USA, I thought that I was delivering Chinese culture. However, after I entered the best Chinese art schools, just I realized that never a person who are native Chinese or had learned a little things surface for some years, we could be able to deliver Chinese culture very well. In fact I did not really enter in the gate of Chinese are of paintings at all. Even today, I do not think that I can say that I have truly entered the gate of Chinese painting yet. Because, the more I learn, the more I saw the Chinese culture¨s extensive and profound, the more I did not think that I have learned enough.

Base on this idea, I have offered classes 63 times for more than 2000 person-times since 2009, and I have been carrying Chinese paper, brushes for the local people from far away China since 2010, but I have been keeping doing all of these free for the local people, because, I do not think that I have had the qualifications to ^ teach ̄ the others. I am just a student and an explorer who is studying, thinking, finding and wishing to create a best method to help non-Chinese speakers to learn Chinese culture, art and language naturally, artistically and more easily.

So, this week, when I heard the aloud sounds that American students read, sang and recited the most famous Chinese Tang Dynasty poems by enjoying the paintings that I painted, accompanying by the music I created, when I saw so many lovely American teenagers and the gentle adults held their Chinese brushes to paint their first Chinese Song Dynasty Baimiao paintings C the third or the second step of Chinese Gongbi Paintings carefully, when I found few talent American students have done so wonderful work better than some professional Chinese art students, I did feel that the ancient Chinese culture and civilization does not only belong to Chinese, but also it belongs to whole of the human being. Since I am lucky person who was majored in Chinese classical literature and language, economics, journalism (news), English, business administration, Chinese painting at 8 universities in China and in USA, worked in education, publishing, news, information and multi-media fields, I do feel that I have some responsibility, missions and obligations to deliver and to contribute what I have learned, thought and created to the world.

So, even though I should live at hospital according to the opinions of my doctors and I had paid the deposit for my hospitalizing May 1, 2013; even though I needed medicine in the nights or mornings and I got sleepy when I just sat on a chair after offering 6 lessons, it was full of the warm and comfort in my heart.

Among Pikeville people, I felt the value of my long-term cross-culture and comprehensive studying, thinking and exploring.

As a lucky person, City of Pikeville and Hampton Inn not only offered the best life condition to me, but also, they have stood 50 % of my living cost during my travel in USA, plus the considerate looking after of Mrs. Leigh Ann Hughes, my healthy has been kept on a stable level.

With a grateful heart, I would like to do something more for the local American people:

-- I will leave whole of my income from my first art exhibition in City of Pikeville to the city, to found a little Chinese Art Study Reward Fund, to encourage and reward the local non-Chinese speakers (mainly the teenagers) to learn Chinese culture, arts and language; while to support my E-bridge cross-culture and comprehensive art project to be developed via some ways in Pikeville City, KY, USA, if it is possible.

-- I wish my Alma Mater C Missouri State University would get re-pay and help from the project that I had been studying, thinking and exploring there via some suitable way, while I wish what I have done would get help, support and admit on academy level by my own university at the first. Then I will have a reunion with my family in Australia. : - )

-- Anyway, now, I am going to go back Beijing as soon as possible. To continue my art study in the best art academies and Chinese cultural center by the good directions of the best artists and professors in Chinese art fields.

I am not sure what will happen to me in USA, in Australia and in China, but, I am sure ^ 爺祇滑輩 -- God will certainly help those who help themselves  ̄I will certainly to do my best to improve myself , to help anyone who are interested in Chinese culture, art and language anywhere, with a sincere heart and the actual work down to earth.

How about you? Do you have anything special to share this week?

Photo Notes:

No. 1: The first group of adults and university students worked hard on their first Chinese paintings in my first class at Hampton Inn, Pikeville City - May 13, 2013

No 2. A group of students were reading and singing a Chinese classical poem in Tang Dynasty in my 5th free class in City of Pikeville -- May 14, 2013

No 3. A group of students worked on their first Chinese Painting in my 9th free class in Pikeville Elementary School, May 15, 2013

N0.4 A group of students worked on their Chinese Baimiao Painting at Pikeville High School in my 8th free class - May 15

No.5. A part of adults who attended my 21st free class at Hampton Inn -- May 17, 2013

No. 6. This girl worked for 3 lessons and she completed a high quality Chinese Baimiao painting in Pikeville High School May 17, 2013

No. 7. This girl who is just 12 years old, worked for 3 lessons, she completed a wonderful Chinese Baimiao painting in Pikeville Elementary School May 17, 2013

No. 8. Can you believe this is the work of a girl who is just 12 years' old?

No. 9. This girl did not only completed her first Chinese Baimiao painting, but also, she tried her first Chinese Gongbi painting in my 16th - 17th lesson in Pikeville City, May 15-16, 2013

No. 10. Can you imagine this is the first work by an American girl in my 16th-17th free class plus much free time? May 15-16, 2013

No. 11. This girl completed her first Chinese Baimiao Painitng in my 19th-20th class May 17, 2013

No. 12. This student completed his first Chinese Baimiao Painting in my 16th-17th class May 15- 16, 2013

No. 13. This boy created a painting for me with his first Chinese Characters Xie Xie (Thank You) to me after attending my vocal poem lesson -- May 15, 2013

No14. Prof. John bought this painting for his office, May 12, 2013

No.15. Dr. Nicole Schnopp-Wyatt Bought this painting May 12, 2013

No. 16. Ms. Emma Jones bought this painting, May 12, 2013



No. 17. After my first Vocal Poetry and Painting lesson, they were so happy to take a photo with me at Pikeville Centre High School -- May 13, 2013


Sincerely, your,

Shirley Yiping Zhang
May 19, 2013(American Time)

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