BLACKALLS Park artist Stephen Cassettari did not simply decide to become a Chinese painter.
"Chinese painting chose me," Mr Cassettari said.
Mr Cassettari revealed he fell in love with the artform many moons ago.
"People waste their whole lives saying 'Shall I do this or that', but when you fall in love you don't make a decision, love makes the decision."
Mr Cassettari gave a demonstration of Chinese art at Charlestown Library recently. He said Chinese art "relates to a holistic approach to life".
"The Chinese way is the middle way," he said. "I call it the jazz [music] of art."
The heart of Chinese painting is all about balance.
"My heart goes into every brush stroke," he said.
Mr Cassettari criticised recent state government cuts to arts courses.
"People need not just a physical life and financial life but an emotional life as well, otherwise they die inside," he said.
"In Italy, and I'm half Italian, they understand this.
"In Australia, it's all about a sporting life."
Mr Cassettari has also written more than 10 books on Chinese painting.