Marina D. Estrera-Balce

About Me

Marina Photo

Full Name: Marina Domine Estrera-Balce (married to Alexander R. Balce)

Nationality: Filipino


  • PhD in Biology Education, University of the Philippines College of Education (Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines), 1996
  • MA in Biology Education, De La Salle University College of Education (Taft, Metro Manila, Philippines), 1973
  • BS in Education (Major: Biology and Integrated Science), University of the East (CM Recto Avenue, Metro Manila, Philippines), 1969
  • Paco Catholic School, Metro Manila, Philippines, 1965


  • Gracia Cielo E. Balce, MD
  • Niccolo Inigo E. Balce


  • Watercolour painting, particularly Chinese brush painting (Lingnan and Shui Mo)
  • Charcoal and watercolour pencil drawing
  • Reading–from comics to cartography
  • Blogging at WordPress
  • Social networking at Tweeter and Pinterest
  • Solving crossword puzzles
  • Cooking and baking
  • Ikebana
  • Bonsai
  • Special flower arrangements worn for special events (e. g., floral crown, lei with medallion, wrist corsage, over-the-shoulder-to-breast corsage, breast corsage)
  • Low-maintenance gardening

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About Chinese Brush Painting

I have been an on-and-off  watercolour painter when I was still studying, raising my two children, and practicing my profession as a teacher and a researcher-writer. After my retirement from work, I picked up my hobbies again. For watercolour painting,  I focused on Chinese brush painting, as its truisms attracted me to it:

See the great in the small; see the small in the perspective of the great.”–Anonymous

If you aim to dispense with method, learn method; if you aim at facility, work hard; if you aim for simplicity, master complexity.“–Lu Ch’ai (Wang Kai), Master of Ch’ing Tsai T’ang, XVII Century

Look. Art knows no prejudice, art knows no boundaries, art doesn’t really have judgment in its purest form. So just go, just go.“–K.D. Lang

The basics of Chinese brush painting are posted in: Chinese Brush Painting by Asia-Art.NET. In that website, you will learn about the history of Chinese brush painting and its three types: figure, landscape, and flower-and-bird paintings. It also gives basic information about the Chinese brush, ink, and colour.

It is very interesting to discover and learn the basics of the Chinese brushes, ink, and colours. The basic Chinese brushes– crab claw; flower; and orchid and bamboo–have distinctive uses. Then, the Chinese ink alone–mixed with water in countless shades–can express the different characteristics of subjects being painted. And, the Chinese watercolours are exceptionally brilliant. For example, adding traces of brown or green to rocks, trees, leaves, grasses, and mosses in a painting can express the feeling of a particular season or weather condition. (Note: In western painting, various shades of colour are used to express the relation of a subject to a fixed source of light.)

For a person like me who has been used to using her left brain for decades of studying and working, I’m sure my art hobbies–especially my Chinese brush painting–can save me from leaving my right brain unused. I can say outright that my journey to old, old age will be very fruitful and enjoyable.