Friday, September 30, 2011

Sneak Peak Friday - A Little Bit of Everything

Over a year ago my sweet son loaded up the laptop that his dad (my dh) and he had decided I needed (I told them they were wrong - but it turns out I was!) with the awesome Photoshop program CS5!  Isn't he the best?  I had looked at it, played with it, tried to follow online tutorials to try to learn it...it is awesome and it is HUGE...with homeschooling and other leadings, it seemed I never had enough time to learn it...but this past week, I worked through part of a course (free!) by Kim Klassen and this is just a little of what I have learned...of course this is my precious tweener - photo from about a year ago!


You can "mouse over" the photo to see the 'before' that I worked from...Kim Klassen also has a tutorial on how to do that!  I am getting so techy!

she turned just as I snapped the photo!
Another project that we did together is this sock monkey you see her holding...she wanted this kit a long time ago, and recently began working hard on it. She did most of it - I did the machine sewing on the sock as it is a little difficult to sew that stretchy material...We finished it just in time to give it to a friend's baby - whose nursery is being done up in monkey motif!

I have been working on sketching and the "Till We have Faces" angel...but the angel doesn't look like there has been any progress (ahh, that tedious stage), and I want to post this, so look soon for more, including the sketches inpired by Junelle and Jennifer

Some of you asked last week about the book by C.S. Lewis "Till We Have Faces" - it is a book he wrote for the love of his life, his wife, Joy.  The jacket declares that it is a retelling of the classical myth of Cupid and Psyche...from the back description "This is the story of Orual, Psyche's embittered and ugly older sister, who possessively and harmfully loves Psyche.  Much to Orual's frustration, Psyche is loved by Cupid, the god of love himself, setting the troubled Orual on a path of moral development."  If you are a C.S.Lewis fan, you won't be disappointed.  If you think he is hard to read, this one is as easy and full of adventure as the Chronicles of Narnia...and that is all I will say!

Joining with Jennifer and other creatives at Studio JRU
StudioJRU

Friday, September 23, 2011

Sneak Peak Friday - Mixed Industrial Angel wip

Remember these?





and this.....
(the flowers got obscured)

They are turning into this:
Sorry about the flash glare!
  She doesn't have a face yet...
she may not get one...
have you ever read C.S. Lewis's "Till We Have Faces"?

Joining with Jennifer and other creatives at Studio JRU
StudioJRU

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

A Psalm of Cinquains - f and g

"F"
Fountain
of Life that gives
Life - bubbling over
with joyful abandon for all
to drink.

"G"
Gracious
God with holy
lovingkindness flowing...
hardened hearts gently open to
His love.

I recently got inspired by David's work in writing Psalm 119...and at the same time had come across this instruction (from an old homeschool English book) for writing cinquains...I am sure it wasn't just a serendipitous coincidence!  So here I am, taking the 26 letters of the English alphabet and creating my own Psalm of Cinquain for my Lord...(one a week for imperfect prose, now upped to 2!)
Here is the pattern for writing a cinquain:
Line 1 - states the title.........................2 syllables
Line 2 - describes the title....................4 syllables
Line 3 - expresses an action ................6 syllables
Line 4 - expresses a feeling..................8 syllables
Line 5 - another word for the title.........2 syllables

Would you like to join me in writing your own?

Friday, September 9, 2011

Guardian 1 - finished

The finished painting...(I have since painted the background a lighter shade of blue, 
scroll to the bottom of the post see how it looks now)

16" x 20" artist canvas...sides painted black and ready to hang
words across the robe read "...their angels always see the face of My father who is in heaven..."


The story:
Guardians.  We are guarded by heavenly hosts, even from childhood according to Scripture.  I suspect the assignment begins at the moment of conception, as God's esteem of the preciousness of all life would warrant the protection of even the smallest component.  I think the Spirit's conversation over all this was prompted by my attention over the changes needed in the left wing (mentioned in last week's post here).  My thoughts, mingling with His, telling me it didn't have to be perfect, to match the other wing perfectly..."after all, why can't each wing, every feather, be as unique as a snowflake...as unique as each one that the angels are assigned to guard.  Wouldn't the Creator God be as intrigued with variety, as bored with sameness as your creative heart?"  I was listening, my brush gaining more freedom as the words soaked into my inmost being.  

I adjusted the lighting so you could see the texture in the canvas...
the canvas was a garage sale find, and I painted over what was there, but left the texture. 

There is texture in the face - look around the eyes and you can see it.
 

He continued, "And since their wards are children, wouldn't the guardian appear in a way that would appeal to a child?  Perhaps feathers in disarray?" (At this point I am wondering why I even picture angels with feathered wings?! The result of culture no doubt!) And images of angels with wing feathers all askew, smudges on faces and crooked baseball caps along with rumpled robes were parading in my mind at this point!  Very appealing to the children I was thinking!  The words continued, "Why do you carry the image of perfection in the heavenlies that you do, the image of symmetry and order that has no variation, nothing "out of place"?  Yes, the angels, being spirit beings, can transform themselves, ...they can appear with perfect symmetry as you imagine, or as imperfect as any child, even to the point of appearing just as a human".  And I am wondering why, if they are simply beings of light, do I think of them as having wings at all (?) - and He faithfully floats up the description of the cherubim in Ezekiel...ah yes, there are the wings...and I am grateful that He even knows when my heart is becoming confused, and takes the moment to help untangle it...
close-up of eyes and face

The words were rushing, or perhaps it was word pictures being dropped in my spirit.  Truths that I have planted deep were being drawn to the surface and woven through new ideas - to me - that were as old as time itself...the definition of perfection - God's definition (the Hebrew word translated "perfect" carries the meaning of being complete, whole, sound...); plus the verse from Matthew 18:10 which declares "their angels always see the face of my Father who is in heaven" (ESV).  I know somewhere that beholding His face, being in His Presence, is the source of perfection: I am complete in Him; I lay my brokenness down in exchange for His Wholeness.  (More truths here)

The image of the angels gazing at His face in heaven, of understanding their being complete in His Presence, not in and of themselves, was a subtle thought, yet somehow it was as if I always knew it, that I just hadn't had opportunity to solidify it till now...

And couldn't it just be possible, that the great conflict in heaven, where a third of the angels lost their way, is the same conflict that we face?  Especially since it was with the same foe?  That the battle the angels faced was over "Will I remain at His throne, beholding His face, worshipping Him only and not turn my face away?"  That it was the subtle, temptation to the individual, to turn to something (or someone) other than the Lord God for completion, satisfaction, wholeness?  That it was a quiet battle fought in the heart, and not with shields and bows and weapons of this world, as depicted in Renaissance works of art?  The thought was astounding, and yet I know that the deepest battle I face is just that...will I remain at His throne, beholding His face? Or will I be distracted away...

And the wing is finished; I emerge from deep thought, thankful that my guardian still is by my side, and has faced the same battles I do, and always beholds the face of My Father, even when mine has turned...

A new, lighter blue background now....


Joining with Jennifer and other creatives at Studio JRU...
StudioJRU

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

A Psalm of Cinquains - e

"E"

He is
Emmanuel...
God with us; Wonderful
Counselor; Redeemer; Friend. My
Jesus!


I recently got inspired by David's work in writing Psalm 119...and at the same time had come across this instruction (from an old homeschool English book) for writing cinquains...I am sure it wasn't just a serendipitous coincidence!  So here I am, taking the 26 letters of the English alphabet and creating my own Psalm of Cinquain for my Lord...(one a week for imperfect prose!)


Here is the pattern for writing a cinquain:
Line 1 - states the title.........................2 syllables
Line 2 - describes the title....................4 syllables
Line 3 - expresses an action ................6 syllables
Line 4 - expresses a feeling..................8 syllables
Line 5 - another word for the title.........2 syllables

Would you like to join me in writing your own?

Friday, September 2, 2011

Guardian 1 - almost there...

StudioJRU

We are in the full swing of school now, it seems our days have settled into a predictable pattern, and this year, I find I have time to do more creating during the school day!  So I have gotten the chance to work on this painting...

Remember the beginning?

And a little further along...

Here is the progress...

still some shading work do be done on the face + finishing the hair...I have really loved creating this piece...I have focused on the wings for about two weeks...I knew something was "wrong" and finally I saw it (have you ever had to walk away from a project multiple times in order to really see it with fresh eyes?)  If you look at the 2nd picture as compared to this one, you can see that the left wing was adjusted...after adding the smaller top feathers - it was clear that the angle I had it going just looked awkward...so I swirled a fresh rainbow of acrylics over the entire wing, obliterating it (that was a growth experience for this recovering perfectionist!) and I adjusted the color of the lips...  I have played with many more layers of shading in the face than I usually use - she is the most realistic face I have attempted.

And as I have painted this week, God has talked to me about perfection - His definition.  I have had His voice whispering about the great war in heaven when a third of the angels fell...I have heard things about the guardian angels we each have assigned over us - actually, He has been gently confronting long held assumptions of mine...
and I will share all that next week when I hopefully post the finished work!

Blessings to each of you!