Our pastor just started a sermon series on the book of John, so our church hosted a “Create Night 01” to give people the opportunity to create a work of art reflecting what stood out to them from the book of John and at some point I expect they are going to display the pictures to go along with the sermon series.
When I heard about this I was so excited! Then a friend asked if I’d be willing to take her daughter and did that sweeten the deal even more! And yet, I’ll be honest. As the night approached I was a bit intimidated, wondering what I’d paint and how it’d look and if I was about to totally humiliate myself!
Now from my art journaling class I’ve been learning how helpful it can be ahead of time to consider ideas. So after reading the couple opening chapters of John I went to google image and looked at pictures of hands and lights. But you know what helped the most? My husband and I went walking before I left, and here in Colorado, well, after daylight savings time kicked in it’s pretty ridiculous how early it starts getting dark – like around 4:45!
As we walked it was amazing to watch the sky and notice the different colors as the day drew to a close. What hit me was the light wasn’t just yellow! (I know, big surprise, right?! But it’s amazing how when you’re getting ready to paint something you notice so much more!) The way it reflected off the clouds that night was breathtaking. In fact, after we got home Jim encouraged me to run out and take some pictures! Were we ever blessed with a colorful sunset!
So with that fresh in mind I headed to pick up my young friend and together we drove to Paint the Town, where we were meeting to create our pictures! Now I love creating art with my young friends nearby. There’s something so fresh and fun about being like a child and diving in, not feeling pressure to create something that will impress others. I highly recommend if you’re just starting out painting to find a young friend to go with you!!!
As we approached the paint, she was so cute, “I have no idea what colors to use!” Neither did I. There were a ton of them! So we prayed together asking the Lord to give us ideas and to guide our hands and make us like Bezalel and Oholiab! :0)
Even as we started painting, I had no idea what I was going to do – just a vague idea that it was going to involve the contrast of light coming into darkness. So I put on my plate all the colors that could even remotely be related to light and started using them all, painting outwards from the center.
Now all around the room people were painting. And there were some amazing artists present – but thankfully I didn’t see their works till after! :0) My friend and I were off at the end of one table and it really was the sweetest time praying each step of the way.
Did it ever hit me how painting a picture for me is like an act of faith. There’s this blank canvas and you have to move to get started putting paint on it, and there’s this fear that each stroke may do damage or mess up the picture beyond repair. What’s really crazy is the more it started to take shape and I liked what I was seeing, the more I was hesitant lest I mess it up! At one point while painting the black around the border I dripped paint right in the center of the drawing and I sat there and looked at it for the longest time, praying, “Um, Lord, what am I supposed to do now?” I’ve heard people say there are no mistakes in art – just incorporate what happens into your design, letting it take you in a new direction. Well, I wasn’t quite sure how to do that. Thankfully as I was praying, the owner of the studio walked up and when I shared my dilemma with her, showed me how to take off that unwanted paint. Just dip a paper towel in water and wipe. I had no idea you could take off top layers without the underlayers coming up too! It was amazing!!!
Really the whole night was! At one point I sensed the Lord wanted me to draw people at the bottom of the picture, but I was like, “Lord, I’m not really good at that” but as I moved forward, dabbling with the paint on my brush, low and behold small people started appearing at the bottom! Right at that point a woman came up to me and said, “Are those people down there?! That is so neat!” I was encouraged it was even recognizable! And then my young friend started demonstrating her favorite poses I’d drawn! :0)
But the scariest part of all came as I added the words. At first I took a black marker and wrote them in black on black on the sides of the painting. But a friend encouraged me to write them on the front as a border. Then when I asked the owner what she thought she suggested I do it in white!!! Yikes! By this time there were only ten minutes left. Were my hands ever shaking! But after, was I ever thankful for their input!
My biggest mistake came when they told me to sign it and the first pen I tried was old and made a mess of my initials. I was so sad. But then I saw there was still some black paint on a paper plate and guess what?!!! It covered the mess right up! And I was able to sign it again with a better pen!
All that to say, whenever I look at my picture I’m amazed because I am so looking at one BIG answer to prayer! Once again I’m so thankful the Lord called me out of my comfort zone…!!!