Friday, February 23 , 2018, 4:18 am | Fair 46º


Lucky Penny Press Releases New e-Book, ‘A to Z in Chinese Calligraphy’

Lucky Penny Press, the innovative publisher of e-books for children, has created another first: a beautifully illustrated book of Chinese calligraphy by local Santa Barbara artist Suemae Lin Willhite.

Suemae Lin Willhite
Suemae Lin Willhite

A to Z in Chinese Calligraphy includes a Chinese pictogram and word for each letter of the English alphabet. The letter A, for example, is the pictogram associated with Ability, while Z is for Zeal.

“I studied Chinese brushstroke calligraphy with Suemae a few years ago,” said Melissa Marsted, founder and president of the Lucky Penny Press. “Because of our friendship and my joy in learning the brushstroke technique and watching her create with such grace, I asked her if she would design the cover for our Chinese translation of Butterfly Beach by Polly Caldwell Bookwalter and translated by Jing Kaye, which is one of our e-books now available in four languages.

“Then we started talking about doing e-books together. This is our first book, and it is beautiful! We plan to do another Chinese calligraphy e-book with animals. We will be adding written instructions on our website, too, as another way of ‘nurturing the creative spirit’ — in adults, as well as children.”

Chinese-American artist Willhite teaches her art, “Meditation and Chinese Brush Painting,” at Santa Barbara City College Continuing Education Division.

“Because this is a meditative art form, it is a tradition to begin our class with a meditation to quiet our spirit before we paint,” she said. “I think it is a blessing to have a wonderful gift such as Chinese calligraphy and painting in my heritage. I am so thankful that I can share the joy of this art form with the Santa Barbara community.

“I’ve watched Melissa grow Lucky Penny Press over the last few years and have been very impressed with what she has created. She is such a joy to work with, as well. Her enthusiasm is contagious. I have been practicing Chinese calligraphy since I was about 8 years old, but it was Melissa’s persistence that got me to do this book.”

Willhite’s art can be seen on her website, which showcases her watercolors, collage and mixed media, in addition to her calligraphy. She also lectures and offers demonstrations and private lessons.

Like all Lucky Penny Press titles, A to Z in Chinese Calligraphy is available for immediate download from the publisher’s website by clicking here. The books are available in a variety of e-reader formats, including those for the iPads, iPhones, Kindles, Nooks, MP3 players and any computer. Every e-book can be downloaded in e-reader and audio format either as a package, or separately.

A portion of proceeds from the sale of Lucky Penny Press titles benefit partner nonprofits. Proceeds from A to Z in Chinese Calligraphy will benefit The Arts Fund of Santa Barbara.

— Leslee Goodman is a publicist representing the Lucky Penny Press.

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