Joy Of The Earth

Joy Of The Earth, 12 x 16, Pastel on board, $350

Day after day, the relentless call came to me “Look over here, create !” I was possessed by the early morning scene that stretched across the eastern sky each day on my walk and the earlier I went out, the more beautiful it became. The yellows and oranges were bursting as the fog gently hovered just above the damp ground on each cool mid-spring morning. After a few days I succumbed to the call.

I had a piece of board in the studio that I had hand primed with a burgundy pastel primer and had been waiting for the right time to put into use. I spent about 5 days working on this pastel painting, but four days out of the five I had truly decided in the middle of the night to fold it up and just throw it away. “Just be done-give it up, throw it away!” the night voices would tell me. But my heart spoke another song, the same song it spoke when the scene called my name, so I persevered.

And on the last day, as the scene then became the painting, it spoke again, this time in silence. I added the final touches and walked away.

Prayerful Thoughts

Prayerful Thoughts, 18 x 20, framed oil on linen, $400

There she was, on her pedestal in that beautiful old cemetery. She was so mournful and so beautiful at the same time with her wreath in hand and I was so compelled to paint her. She had no name attached as a monument to the loved one that she represented. She just knelt there, outside the chapel forever mourning the one she had lost.

“Prayerful Thoughts”, isn’t that the silent attitude that is evoked when we grace the entrance to a cemetery? It is the peaceful reverence for those that have gone on to the unseen place that we know truly exists. It is the knowing that the other side is real because we all love and have known so many that have gone on before us. And love will never ever die, because it continues to live on in us for those that have gone on before. We also know that we too must go on and one day we will, it is a fact.

She is painted in oil on an 18″ x 20″ linen canvas, so fitting for what she represents. And she still brings a sense of peace, even as she mourns on my studio wall.

I hope that I have not alarmed you with my sense of bereavement, it’s just that old cemeteries and old statues bring that out in me, and they are beautiful.

Winter has taken a toll, even on my thoughts and attitude and I think it is time for spring to arrive. It is time for my “prayerful thoughts” to be centered on the resurrection of Christ, the most important event that is celebrated in all of time. My next blog post will be more on that cheerful note! In the meantime, Christ died even for you, take Him at His word, He will never fail you.

“For God so loved the world that He gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16

Image Of A Mother

Image of A Mother, 10 x 14, framed charcoal on Canson paper, $295

It’s been exactly 2 years since I visited South Africa with my husband and other believers from our church on a mission trip to minister to children and teens who were orphans due to the AIDS epidemic there. This was a place I said I would never go, my feet were fine in Ohio but when you hear the call, you go. We prepared VBS activities in advance for children and held the day long events at different orphan centers each day, reaching out to hundreds of kids who were eager to participate.

At the end of the trip as I boarded the plane, I thought about the kids we met and wondered how many had known their mothers before passing away from that horrible disease. The reason I mention mothers is the fact that very few of the kids have fathers at home. They either never knew them or many of the fathers leave home in shame due to not being able to provide for their family. Most of these kids live with grandmothers or other caregivers in the area and they attend orphan centers for schooling, food and other opportunities through an organization that we worked with called Horizon International based in Indiana.

We sponsor a teen age boy that attends one of the orphan centers there and had the privilege of meeting him! I wondered if he had known his mother, how old was he when she passed away and what did she look like? I imagined her and drew a pencil sketch in my journal on the trip home. “Image Of A Mother” was what I thought she would look like, or she could be any of the other mothers that these children had lost.

After that, I had a little bit of culture shock coming back to the USA and wanted to retreat into my studio alone and draw for awhile. In order to create a little record, I used charcoal on a medium toned paper and drew a larger “Image Of A Mother” from the small sketch in my book. I also drew some of the other children in their happy raw form the same way from photographs that I had taken, all are framed and in my studio. The other drawings can be located in my gallery here: Drawings-African Inspired

It humbles me to think about the privilege it was to meet these people who were contented with so little. The pictures from other side of the world became reality for me during that time in South Africa.

 

 

 

 

Jody’s First Blog

It’s sort of like that blank canvas or piece of drawing paper and you tell yourself “Ok, let’s go, you can do this…just do it!” That’s what I felt like several days ago when I set out to write a blog in order to share my collection of paintings and drawings with anyone willing to stop, look and listen. Do you know how many times I have trashed blog startups due brain freeze and being downright frightened to put this out there? I’m sure you can relate. Also, trying to maneuver around and edit a website is another joy, I’d rather be painting!

But I’ll keep these posts simple, just the way we all like it…

Here goes:
Late Summer Sunrise, 8.5 x 10 image, framed pastel on textured paper, $285

It began at 7 a.m. on clear Sunday morning, late summer 2017, a few days after my art friend Lorri Davis had visited. (She always inspires me. We sit for hours usually outside, have lunch and talk art.) Inspired, I decided to set out on a short trek from home with my easel, drawing board, pastels and paper in hand. I walked down to a little dip in the road where a beautiful little valley lies with all kinds of brush, a few trees and wild things growing all about. Occasionally the cows come roaming through which they did that morning! But cows are for another painting on another day. Anyway, it was a perfect morning to be outside. I spent about an hour there, the sun was waking up the day and all of the shadows and light had changed, it was time to go home. I finished “Late Summer Sunrise” in the studio a couple of weeks later. It was so much fun to create that I decided to frame it and enter it into the Middletown Arts Center Area Artist juried art competition last fall. It won 3rd place in the drawing division!