Perseverance Means Victory- Shirley's 372nd Friendly Greeting, Oct 7, 2012

How are you?

Today is the last day of the 7-day’s national vacation of China. After working in the classroom for 7 days, I came back home earlier, to write this letter to you now. :- )

In the past 7 days, I painted 9 paintings – 5 paintings for my publication in the classroom, 4 little paintings for fine and 337 Chinese characters as my daily calligraphy practice.

Since I came back Beijing Sep 16, I have re-painted 9 of my 12 paintings for my publication already and I am thinking whether it is possible to connect them as a long scroll.

Today is also the 1 anniversary of my study in Chinese National Academy of Arts. This day last year, as soon as I came back from the 2011 Kentucky World Language Conference in USA, I flew back to Beijing, to start my new art study here.

Within the one year, except attending lessons of more than 20 professors and artists, I painted 133 paintings ( 32 paintings for my comprehensive art products, 9 Chinese Gongbi paintings and 93 Chinese Xieyi Paintings); wrote / re-written 15 articles in English, re-translated 31 poems into English, corrected 31 pieces of music that I had created for Chinese classical poems and re-sang and re- recorded 13 of them in Chinese and in English in a professional music company, made 15 records to help non- Chinese speakers to learn Chinese language and cultures.

Today, when I recall what I have done in the past 1 year, I cannot believe my own eyes, a big word jumps into my mind – Perseverance.

I began the cross-culture project in 2000 and I started my comprehensive art exploration in 2005.

But, after I became a full time student in Beijing Nov, 2010, I did not paint any painting for the project for I did not think that my knowledge and skills could support it. Until Oct 7, 2011, I entered CNAA, the totally free and quite relaxed study and research environment here gave me the courage to work on it continuously.

Then I got many comments or criticisms. I was lucky enough that the leaders, professors and tutors in Chinese Painting School of CNAA did not simply deny my ideas and exploration, but they allowed me to do what I wanted to do freely, directed me to improve my painting skills and conceptions.

Day and day, when the time was near the end of the first class year, more and more classmates started to encourage me to keep doing it and thought maybe it would be my own road; my tutors chose a part of my paintings with Chinese poems and the translations in English on it, to exhibit them and to publish them in a formal publication; an university publishing house would like to publish the first group of my comprehensive works with paintings, music, articles and records. Even, you cannot imagine, a business man who sells brushes wanted to make an exchange with me – he wished to give me some brushes, while be given a painting of mine, with English on it. :- )

This semester, since I came back Beijing, I got much more supports from my new schoolmates, except many of them taught me how to improve my paintings, some of them also suggested me how to make my English on the paintings look more reasonable and how to use a stamp better...

Except study, my life in Beijing has also been improved much more, the new hotel has a better life equipment and the room is bigger, now I can paint and write at home and I need not stay in the classroom until midnight. When the school is moved to a better place in Beijing in the near future, we will be offered dormitory and mess hall. If anyone wants to live alone, the school also will let us meet our requirements.

Every thing in Beijing is getting better and better…

Except still there is some edema, the stomachache has gone since I came back Beijing Sep 16.

So, now, when I wrote this letter to you, I cannot help thinking “ The important thing is perseverance.”

-- If I did not keep doing what I wanted to do when I was among the criticism, I would not get the support finally.
-- If I gave up the work of writing articles and creating music while I was learning painting, I would not get the opportunity to publish the comprehensive art work.
-- If I could not keep staying in Beijing when I lived in an extremely hard living environment with sicknesses (there was no any hot water in the water pool in the little hotel I lived and there was no any place to fix a TV after I had fixed a music instrument in my room), I would not be able to meet the better life condition now and in the near future...
-- If I did not keep investing my limited capital on the project but lived my own life simply, I would not have today at all...

Perseverance means victory. Right?

Anyway, since the final victory needs me to pursue for whole of my life, I am going to keep and to take perseverance forever. Do you think so?

How about you? Do you have anything special to share this week?
I am just a student on Art of Painting, Music, English and Management, to work on the web site in my free time. I would really like to do a few things with what I have learned to make this little web site to be an Electronic Bridge of Inter-Art & Cross - Culture Exchange, Chinese Language Learning & Friendship Making. To help the others while to improve myself.

I would like to appreciate you for your understanding, directions, supports and help.

If you have any questions, comments or suggestions, you are welcome to write to or leave your message on Message Board.

Shirley Yiping Zhang
Oct 7, 2012(Beijing Time)

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