Painting in China has a long history of evolution and refinement, one that is entirely unique comparing to the other ways of painting humanity has ever developed. The major element of traditional Chinese painting was nature motif, and a work itself was an attempt to capture a feeling, or an immediate response, not an image. Such attitude toward art gave Chinese painting a mainly expressive character in both of its materials and techniques.
Illustrated history of Chinese paintingDynasties
Essays on Chinese painting
The Chinese don't paint from life as Western painters do. They observe surroundings and paint what they understand. Chinese painters refer to the action of painting as writing. They take a writing brush to paint and paint in the same way as they write. The Chinese paint with a single color, black, looking upon the monochrome drawing as an art form. There are two styles in Chinese painting, meticulous and freehand style, each requiring different brush, ink and paper. What discusses here is how a work of a particular style is created in China. The painting techniques are actually more complicated in practice.