This blog describes the process of a commissioned prophetic painting that began an acrylic pour. The face in the painting formed without any work of my own.Read More
Every January for the last several years I have painted 30 Paintings in 30 Days. Prior to 2018 those paintings have always been intuitive paintings on Yupo paper with acrylic ink and acrylic paint. But this year I had to continue what I began at the end of 2017. I had begun pouring paint onto canvases. I had entered the world of acrylic pours. I had to admit I was hookedI I LOVED watching the paint pour onto the canvas. As the paint slowly covered the surface of the canvas it gave life to new, beautiful images. It was my task to "see" the seed of those images in the wet paint and later give them further clarity once the poured paint had dried.
This process of mixing the paint, pouring the paint, manipulating it a bit while it was wet, seeing an image and then painting in the details of the image once it dried, had become my daily creative process since January 1, 2018. I'm now on day 29 and I have a substantial body of work that has been birthed in an atmosphere of worship and prayer. I've had faith to believe that each time I poured paint onto the canvas, God would show me an image. He has been faithful. I have seen images emerge every time I poured. Some of these images were extraordinary, some were ordinary. All of them taught me about the process of God's pouring His love onto the canvas of our lives.
Just as in the process of an acrylic pour, the beginning of a poured out canvas, looks very different than the finished piece, so our lives look very different now than they did when we were first born. Siblings born into the same family will each have their unique personalities and giftings, no two will be alike. So it is with an acrylic pour. The same colors can be used for two paintings but those two paintings will come out completely different. Any slight variation in the amount of paint or the tilt of the canvas creates a whole new image. There are times during the process of the pour that the canvas looks like a mess... just a bunch of paint on the canvas. But God, but the artist, can bring out something beautiful and unique from that "mess". Our job, as the canvas, is to be patient when we don't see what God is doing. A poured canvas needs time to dry before the artist can further define the seeds of the image. As children of God, we need patience and faith that the good work that God began in us will be brought to completion.
He will use all things in your life for good. Nothing is ever wasted. Trust the process of waiting. His timing is perfect. Don't be afraid of the unknown. Let go and let God refine and define you. You are in good hands. You are that prophetic pour in the hands of the Master Artist.
"A Rose For My Lady", 16"x20", Acrylic on Stretched canvas
Captivity, noun, the state or period of being held, imprisoned, enslaved, or confined.
How does one go from a place of captivity or fear to a place of creativity or freedom? As I write this blog, I'm reminded of a recent type of imprisonment I experienced at a part-time job. I didn't realize until I was hired and attempting to learn the job that I felt oppressed, imprisoned and fearful. The demands of the job were beyond my grasp and as hard as I tried to master the job, I always fell short. The harder I tried, the more I just didn't measure up. I had taken the job because of a financial need. In retrospect I believe God wanted me to trust Him for the provision we needed. Instead, I jumped into a job that I was unable to master. The more progress I made in learning the job, the more I was required to learn. I finally gave up and gave my notice. I stayed until a replacement could be found.
During my stay at this job I learned a great deal about what God created me to do and what he did not create me to do. In order to fully thrive and walk in freedom, it's important to know what freedom looks like. Sometimes God lets you experience what captivity or imprisonment looks like to understand freedom and creativity. As a creative person, it's important for me to be free to create my own schedule and have the freedom to say yes or no to an assignment. It's important that I know my limitations and my capabilities. When I had this part-time job, I longed to be home to paint and work on my art business. It gave me the determination and courage to take my art to the next level. It was while I was working at this job that I created my new website. I also joined an on-line Facebook mentoring group for prophetic artists. I began to take my art more seriously and that has made a huge difference for me. If I don't value what I do, how can I expect others to value what I do.?
I no longer feel like I need to get a "real" job. Being an artist IS my job. It is what God has called me to do. He has made it very clear. Sometimes God takes us through a period of captivity to show us that He came to set us free. We have the key to get out of our place of captivity. We can say this is not what I was made to do... I was made to create... to be free to create. What has God made you to do that only you can do? What has He given you a passion to do? If you don't do it and take that next step, you'll stay in your place of captivity. He came to set you free. Walk in your freedom and come out of captivity. Take your step of faith. God has his hand stretched out to you.
The Lord has always spoken to me through visual means. Sometimes it is through a dream, a picture in my mind's eye, a painting or photograph or the beauty in nature. About a year ago the Lord captured my attention through a vision I had during worship at our church. As the worship time was coming to an end, I sat down with my eyes closed. As soon as I sat down I saw a lion only inches away from my face. He startled me. His eyes were looking into mine. I could literally feel his breath and fur on my face. And then he put his paws on my shoulders. The weight of them penetrated my being. I could not move, not because I was afraid, but because I was in awe. When the music ended, my eyes remained closed. I wanted to linger in the presence of the lion that I had just previously visited me.
That day my husband and I had planned to attend a Memorial Day Art Festival in Harrisburg, PA. I was determined to find a photo of a lion so it would remind me of the experience I had that morning. I wanted to put the photo in our prayer closet. I looked at many photographs that day and then found the perfect photo of a lion. The eyes of the photographed lion captured the strength and heart of the lion I saw in my vision. I explained to the photographer why I wanted the photo and he shared how his photography was his livelihood but also a ministry. That was a blessing.
In the months that followed I prayed and sought the Lord about what He was trying to show me through the lion. It appeared the Lord was calling me to a greater intimacy with Him and an impartation of courage. I believe He was preparing me to launch my art business to the next level. That level would require me to take risks and believe what God had told me about painting for Him. He wanted me to be bold, step out and believe.
So it was with great excitement when I saw the eyes of a lion begin to form as I intuitively painted one of my 30 paintings in 30 days in January of this year. As soon as I saw the eyes beginning to form in the paint, I went to get the photo of the lion in our prayer closet. I wanted to look at it so I could capture the intensity of his eyes.
The eyes are forming
This was the "seed" of my painting. I further defined it until I had the image below.
Normally I don't look at a photo reference when I paint but rather rely on my imagination. This lion, however, needed to be as real as possible because I knew God was letting me paint the lion I saw in the vision and that lion was very real to me.
My finished painting of the lion I saw in the vision.
Just as there are many layers of color in this painting, there are many layers of meaning to the lion vision God gave me during worship. People who see it, often tell me of their lion stories and what God is showing them through a lion that has appeared in their dreams, visions or in His Word. I find myself needing more courage these days as I face greater challenges in our finances, in my art business and in my spiritual life. But then I remember the vision of the lion and I feel the breath and fur of the lion on my face. I feel the weight of his paws on my shoulders. God is with me. His strength and courage are with me. He sees me and He sent me a lion to remind me that sometimes He is like a lion. Sometimes He wants me to be like a lion too.
May this year be your year to be courageous and bold like a lion. May this image of "The Lion" encourage you.