September 2, 2014

Hope on the Horizon

I refinished an old antique wooden frame to compliment the painting. 
 Color is light tan with golden highlights and small brown flecks that match the barn roof.  
Below is a more accurate photo of the color of the frame.

I just finished is my latest painting titled, "Hope on the Horizon."This piece will be up for auction at Help The Fight's annual benefit dinner on Saturday, September 13.  For more information on the benefit auction, I have provided a link to their organization.   If you are unable to attend and would like more information on this painting or to place an absentee bid, please contact me at

The Story Behind the Painting:

For this piece, I wanted to challenge myself and step out of my comfort zone.    As I began, I realized that it was going to take longer than most of my paintings and I faced several challenges along the way.  When a viewer sees a painting, they only see the finished piece and not all the work and surrounding circumstances that goes into a painting.  However, for an artist, each painting brings to mind memories of the process of that work of art.

 When I start a painting, I have a vision in my head and my job is to figure out how to get that vision from my head to the canvas.  That's not always an easy process.  While working on this one in particular, I faced several challenges.   One of the things that goes into my paintings is a lot of prayer.  Why?  I never had the luxury of art school and being self-taught requires me to do a lot of extra reading and studying to learn what I need to know.  It also means that I must depend on the one who gave me my talent, to help me navigate through the details.

During this painting, I worked through several late night sessions ending after 1:30 AM,  some sleepless nights, several days of constant dizziness, and other obstacles.  There was a moment in the process that I almost gave up and wanted to quit, but I didn't.  I knew from experience, that if I kept at it and broke it down into bite-sized pieces, with the Lord's help, I could accomplish my vision.

I think the greatest lesson I learned through the process of this painting is endurance.  In life, we face many obstacles, challenges and risks.  Over 20 years ago, I encountered an obstacle in my life.  I was diagnosed with chronic vertigo.  After 9 doctors and many tests, I was left with no answers and no cure. I questioned God about it often.  At times I felt alone.  I wondered what good He could possibly bring from this.  This invisible illness turned my life upside-down.  I left a good paying job with benefits and started on a risky journey of following my early childhood dream of being an artist.  Now, I am beginning to see why God allowed this in my life.  He was always there beside me, working behind the scenes, building endurance in me.

As I painted the last shingles on the house in my painting, I had such a feeling of hope and that "hope was on the horizon." Hope that my vision was becoming a reality.  I realized that hope does not come until we have struggled and endured the test.  This morning I came across these verses.  They were just what I needed to hear.

"Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us."  Romans 5:3-5

For me, I am learning that I must depend on the Lord, who has a plan for my life and to take life in bite-sized pieces to build endurance.  That endurance is what will lead to HOPE.

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