Everything is moving right along in the studio these days. I've gotten a pretty good start on the final piece in my God Breathed series. I'm hoping this one turns out okay. It's going to be a little tricky, but it's looking good so far. I don't have any pictures to show you, but I can show you the figure study I worked up for it.
Looks like a pretty traditional pose, and it is. Which is why it's going to be tricky, because in keeping with the series, my goal is to turn this traditional-looking figure into something a little crazy. Really, I'm just hoping to have fun with this one, and I'm looking forward to showing you all the result.
Now, regarding the Images Gallery Juried Exhibition... Wow, was this an interesting experience! Let me start off by saying that I happily received the Best of 2D award for my latest self-portrait. The award took me completely by surprise because the show directors usually notify award-winners in advance to make sure they will show up to the reception to receive their awards. I received no such notification either through phone or email. But I went to the reception anyway just because. I thought it would be good to keep up appearances. So there I am at the reception on April 15th, and I was honestly about to walk out the door by the time the awards announcements began. It was so crowded, and I don't do well in crowded places. But I was kind of trapped. So I just stood there and listened intently, because what else could I do? All of a sudden, they announce the Best of 2D winner, and I hear my name called. Well, it was a good thing I showed up after all. I am very thankful for the award, and happy something good finally came out of this show for me. I've done this show four times, and this was my first top award.
The Images Gallery's Juried Exhibition is on display until May 14th during the gallery's regular hours. Check out http://imagesartgallery.com for information.
So, speaking of my Self Portrait, I have entered it into the annual Jerry's Artarama Self Portrait Contest online, and I would really really appreciate your votes for it! The voting just began this week, and continues through May 20th. All you have to do is go to the following link, enter your email address, and click "Vote". You will receive an email asking you to confirm your vote. Simply do that, and your vote is secured for my piece. I really appreciate everyone voting for me! Here is the link to vote:
Beyond all this fun stuff, I am also doing a few small nature studies. The plan is to get out and do more plein air painting as spring and summer weather gets nicer. Although it's been pretty rainy lately. But with a nice new camera, I was able to get out a few days ago on an overcast day and get a few reference shots. Here are the oil studies on paper I did for those:
I'm not sure yet if I want to go for something big and elaborate with these nature studies, or if I just want to have fun doing some plein air painting this summer. I'm leaning towards the latter and just having fun and relaxing painting time over the summer.
I say that because I have something planned for the fall and winter later this year. Another new and pretty ambitious series. I've already begun the conception of a few pieces for this series, and I am very excited for them. Much like God Breathed, I hope and pray this will be yet another bold declaration of faith and the Gospel in visual form.
Today just happens to be the National Day of Prayer, and this year's theme is "Wake Up America." Something I've been praying for a while. That phrase, "wake up" began the God Breathed series for me, and inspired my painting Wake the Dead. The passage that inspired me for that painting was in Ephesians 5:14.
Wake up, O sleeper,
rise from the dead,
and Christ will shine on you.
This new series has been inspired by something that came out of God Breathed that I want to expand on, and out of the passages of Scripture that come just before 5:14, as Paul calls on the people to live as children of light. To fight the darkness head on with light. To not only avoid the evil deeds of darkness, but to expose them. As people of faith, it is not a suggestion but a commandment for us to be outspoken with the light. To give everything we are to the cause of Christ. The National Day of Prayer's verse for this year comes from Isaiah 58: 1.
Shout it aloud, do not hold back. Raise your voice like a trumpet.
Faith requires boldness. We cannot hold back. The light must shine, and shine bright, in order to defeat the darkness.