Saturday, August 4, 2012

Vanguard


Vanguard

Acrylic

$500



As I continue to paint angels from photo references and from my imagination, skin tones that intrigue me are those that are more than human, or different than human.... You may have noticed my statue pieces are rarely "gray", but golds or blues or purples, etc.  So, please don't think that I see African skin tones as oranges and sepias, ok?  This huge, looming masculine warrior is intentionally in other-than-human colors.  He came solely out of my imagination and inspiration from Holy Spirit. 

A dear friend said that he reminded him of Mister T from the old show, "The A-Team" and how he would glower ferociously and say, "I pity the fool!" 

This angel is definitely supposed to represent a guardian angel, and his protection of the weak would be absolute.  He is a front-line kind of angel, ready for anything the enemies could bring on, so his name is Vanguard, which means the first battalian of warriors engaging the enemy armies.  He doesn't just hang out waiting for a fight, he charges out to get the enemy!

If you are in need of some protection today, or perhaps need encouragement that God does really send help, I hope that this angel painting will bring you comfort and hope.  Scripture tells us that "the angels of the Lord encamp round about those that fear His Name."  So, if you feel surrounded by enemies that you can see, be assured that you are also surrounded by those invisible ones who will fight on your behalf!  Call on the Name of the Lord!  He is with you and His angels are, too. 





Saturday, July 21, 2012

Serenity


Serenity

Acrylic on canvas

24" x 18"


Two posts in one day after so many months!  I'm sorry, but it would be a shame to overlook this angel painting done from a black and white photo close-up of a gorgeous statue.  This blog site is only for the angels and not for all the other kinds of paintings I do. 

She seems to me sort of a cross between a living being and a bas-relief.  Perhaps she will share some of her serenity with you.  :-)

Undefeatable


Undefeatable

Acrylic and gold foil on canvas

$500.

Although I have hundreds of photographs of angel statuary, and often go through them to see if there is one among them that calls my name requesting to be painted, there are very, very few male angels among them.  And there are even fewer male warrior angels among them.  I want to paint male angel warrior angels, so I find this frustrating.  Holy Spirit asked me to just go ahead and paint some!  Ummm, with no references at all?  Yes, just paint.  I LOVE to "just paint"!  So, here is one angel portrait I've completed, whose name is Undefeatable.  The styling was influenced by the graphic novel characters we were recently painting for an event at the gallery, in case you wonder about his colors. But then, who really knows what colors angels may be, right?

It's a reassuring concept that one's guardian angel could not be defeated in battle.  I hope you like him.  If you do, I'd love to hear from you.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

First Watch Over the Mississippi






First Watch Over the Mississippi

SOLD - Commissioned

36" x 24"
Acrylic on canvas

One of my earlier angel paintings found a home with a dear friend of ours in North Carolina where we used to live, and her daughter-in-law asked me if I would paint an angel for her to go over their fireplace.  She picked a palette that she loved from some of my other paintings, and asked for an angel in the sky however I saw fit to create her.

My first attempt was posted while in process on my Facebook page for Sarah Paints, and as it was forming, it became clear to me that this young wife and mother didn't need even the naked back of an angel in her living room!  So, that one is still in process at my studio for someone else, and I began again.

The "First Watch" includes the evening hours past dusk into the darkness of night, and this lovely angel is sweeping over the fire-orange sunset-lit autumn trees along the banks of the mighty Mississippi River, guarding and blessing God's creation and creatures.

I hope she will bring blessings into my friends' home and a smile to your face!  If you would like to commission me to create a painting for you, please contact me.

First Watch Over the Mississippi will soon be available as prints and note cards.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Our Little Angel


Maddie with Wings
(Our Little Angel)


I love endearments.  I think they make the person you love feel even more special.  Recently I remembered that my Dad called me "Little Bit" when I was small.  It made me feel precious.  And "Precious" is what our Gran called all of her grandchildren, me included.

Maddie is a little over a year old now, and most often, both of her parents call her "Maddie Bug".  Cute, huh?  Anyway, I've not thought of her as "our little angel", even though I knew that after they visited when she was 10 months old I just HAD to paint her as a cherub.  I used for a reference photo a picture of her seated on a 12' trampoline, looking at a leaf.

The painting is 24"x24" and is done in oils.  I had to really scramble to get it done and dried before shipping it off to California in time for Christmas!  It was a success, as both our daughter and our son-in-law cried over it!!!  They had no idea I was painting Maddie, and their response to it made me extra happy.  Plus, I got to smile for over a month as I painted her.  It made me feel almost as if she were still here with us on the east coast.  California is a very long way away from Virginia....

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Makeda Mekelle


Makeda Mekelle
(Beautiful, Who Is Like God)
Amharic

18" x 24"
Oil on Linen with gold foil

$800

Also available as prints and note cards.

One of my 'friends' on Facebook is a wonderful artist and photographer named Gisela Hammer.  She graciously allowed me to paint a small child that she had photographed.  In her picture, this little girl is in ragged clothes.  The filthy shirt was so torn that there were no shoulders.  She was holding a staff, and stood smiling in front of a rock wall.

There have been other times I gazed upon a person, usually a child, and felt that God gave me His heart and His eyes to see that one, fully loved, fully healed, fully blessed and protected as only our Heavenly Father could do.  That's how it was when I saw this precious little girl.  I saw past the earthly to her true self, her highly esteemed position in Abba's kingdom, and created from her present image an eternal angel.  I "redeemed" her torn T-shirt, stitched in an African gold necklace, and replaced her staff with a golden angelic trumpet.  I hope when you look on this painting, your heart swells.  I hope that you will look on the lowly and the ragged with God's heart and God's eyes, and be filled with His love for them.  He loves you the same way, you know.

Matthew 18:3
And Jesus said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.

Matthew 19:14
Jesus said, “Let the little children come to Me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”

Mark 9:37
“Whoever welcomes one of these little children in My Name welcomes Me; and whoever welcomes Me does not welcome Me but the One Who sent Me.”


Sunday, August 14, 2011

Heavenly Playmates - Aaron


Heavenly Playmates - Aaron

6" x 6" Acrylic on canvas

$75.00

I painted three small cherubs during our 10-10-10 Event at Olde Towne Art in October of 2010.  Two of them immediately sold, leaving Toby by himself.  When I recently finished a very large painting, I decided that Toby needed a playmate, and painted this little cherub who is also from a statue in the Hollywood Cemetery in Richmond, VA.  

When I find cherubs in cemeteries, I often wonder if the artist was commissioned to sculpt a likeness of the child who is buried there as an angel.  In my imagination I like to think that the Lord sends down a friendly spirit to bring a child who leaves this earth to be with Him in heaven, so cherubs like these have a special place in my heart.  But whether children are escorted by angels who look like other children or whether they are solid, reassuring grown-up looking angels, or whether Jesus Himself appears to take them in His loving arms, who really knows?  For me, there's enough room in the divine mystery for any and all answers, as long as in the end they are with God.

As Jesus arose to heaven (Luke 24:51), so shall those who love Him (2 Cor. 5:1 and Revelation 11:12, which says:  Then they heard a loud voice from heaven saying to them, "Come up here."  And they went up to heaven in a cloud, while their enemies looked on."



Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Breath of Peace


Breath of Peace

36" x 24"
Acrylic on gallery wrapped linen

$600

Also available as prints and note cards.

For an upcoming gallery show entitled, "Black, White and One" I chose this statue's serene face, and aside from black and white I have used only Pthalo Green.  Often during the process I move the painting out of my studio so that I can walk a distance from it and study what still needs to be done, since as you most likely know, I pray and paint as I feel God directs me.  While standing and praying, about half way through her creation, another artist came and looked with me and said in an awe-filled whisper, "She's breathing!"

John 14:27:  Peace I leave with you; My peace I give you.  I do not give to you as the world gives.  Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

John 20:21-22:  Again Jesus said, "Peace be with you!  As the Father has sent Me, I am sending you."  And with that He breathed on them and said, "Receive the Holy Spirit."


Saturday, July 16, 2011

Servant Heart


Servant Heart

18" x 24"
Oil on canvas

$800

Also available as prints and note cards.

Boy, did I make a mistake with the description of this one!  This lovely child angel is a baptismal font, however, she is NOT in Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in Olde Towne Portsmouth.  Dean Burgess graciously gave me a whole stack of photos of various angel statuary he had kept for years, and I misunderstood him to say that this statue was part of Trinity.  When I took a part time position there, I asked him to remind me where this precious child is.  He showed me that "Elizabeth", a young woman angel, is the baptismal font there, and he has no idea where my precious angel child stands.  Sorry that I misled you!  It was definitely unintentional.

The marble of the shell she holds is almost translucent and the quality of light fascinated me.  So, for the painting, I decided to imbue the implied water with a sacred reflective light of its own.  I hope you find meaning in this image.  She gladdens my heart!

I couldn't choose between so many wonderful scriptures about servants and so I've included quite a few here.  Perhaps one will be especially meaningful to you!


2 Samuel 7:29:  Now be pleased to bless the house of your servant, that it may continue forever in your sight; for you, Sovereign LORD, have spoken, and with your blessing the house of your servant will be blessed forever.”

1 Kings 8:23:  and said: “LORD, the God of Israel, there is no God like you in heaven above or on earth below—you who keep your covenant of love with your servants who continue wholeheartedly in your way.

Deuteronomy 3:24:  “Sovereign LORD, you have begun to show to your servant your greatness and your strong hand. For what god is there in heaven or on earth who can do the deeds and mighty works you do?

Joshua 22:5:  But be very careful to keep the commandment and the law that Moses the servant of the LORD gave you: to love the LORD your God, to walk in obedience to him, to keep his commands, to hold fast to him and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul.”

1 Samuel 3:9:  So Eli told Samuel, “Go and lie down, and if he calls you, say, ‘Speak, LORD, for your servant is listening.’”

1 Samuel 25:41:  She bowed down with her face to the ground and said, “I am your servant and am ready to serve you and wash the feet of my lord’s servants.”

Psalm 4:3:  Know that the LORD has set apart his faithful servant for himself; the LORD hears when I call to him.

Psalm 34:22:  The LORD will rescue his servants; no one who takes refuge in him will be condemned.

Psalm 86:4:  Bring joy to your servant, Lord, for I put my trust in you.

Psalm 103:21:  Praise the LORD, all his heavenly hosts, you his servants who do his will.

Psalm 134:1:  A song of ascents. Praise the LORD, all you servants of the LORD who minister by night in the house of the LORD.


Sunday, July 10, 2011

Angel of Victory


Angel of Victory

18" x 36" acrylic on canvas

$650

The references for this angel painting came from some of my photographs taken in Richmond, VA, in the Hollywood Cemetery. One of my favorite things about the old statues is the absolute serenity so often masterfully carved into their stances and facial expressions.  When I was younger I did a lot of stone carving, so I'm especially impressed with these artisans of days past.  The actual statue portrays a younger angel, more like a girl really.  This painting is intended to express the successful warrior angel whose task has been completed and the loved one safely removed from all of life's peril and suffering to heaven's realm of peace and joy.

A praise song from my early days of walking with Christ proclaims:

In the Name of Jesus, in the Name of Jesus,
We have the victory.
In the Name of Jesus, in the Name of Jesus,
Demons will have to flee.
In the Name of Jesus, Jesus, we have the victory!

Psalm 34:7
The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear Him, and he delivers them.

1 Corinthians 15:54-56 (NIV)
When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true:  "Death has been swallowed up in victory."

"Where, O death, is your victory?
Where, O death, is your sting?"

May you have victory in this life and know rescue from every kind of harm and evil by your Savior, Jesus Christ!


Monday, July 4, 2011

Pure Heart


Pure Heart

24" x 20"

Oil on canvas, heavy gold frame

SOLD

Also available as prints and note cards.

So, what helps when we are grieving?  Do funerals help people get through the loss of a loved one?  Does solitude; or  do wakes filled with stories of the loved one's foibles and antics?  Does time really heal?

I've known people who get memorial tattoos which are basically portraits they carry lifelong on their bodies.  Some monied people start foundations or build libraries titled with the name of the beloved person who died.

Most of us carry on with a limp and a heavy heart, going through our days sometimes well and sometimes ... not.  The weight of the loss does change over time, but does that simply mean our thoughts become distracted by all the obligations that fill our days?  Does time really heal?

Ministers at graveside services often still use the old timeworn words, "in the sure and certain hope of resurrection," and this is meaningful to me.  One of the reasons that I scour cemeteries for angel monuments and paint them is this.  They are a reminder of the hope of the resurrection.  So that in loss, when we are at our weakest and most vulnerable, we can look up to heaven and smile; gaze on a cemetery angel or a painting of one, and smile, knowing that our loved one has passed from our sight, but that we will be reunited one day.

I'm guessing that when a child dies, this is the hardest time to carry the weight of grief. I am thankful that is not a grief I have known, but my heart goes out to those who have.  This cherub is one of several I have painted so far, and I'm not sure whether this is a "he" or a "she".  A century ago both genders wore hairstyles like this.  Choose what seems best to you.  I'm going with "her" here.  I love the gentleness of her expression, and the sweet innocence of her prayerfulness.  Who could deny prayers coming from such a one as this?  Certainly a loving Father God will answer these prayers.

"Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God."  Matthew 5:8

"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.  For He chose us in Him before the creation of the world to be holy and  blameless in His sight.  In love He predestined us to be adopted as His sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with His pleasure and will - to the praise of His glorious grace, which He has freely given us in the One He loves."     Ephesians 1:3-6


Thursday, June 30, 2011

Beautiful Mizrahi


Beautiful Mizrahi

20" x 16"
Acrylic on canvas

$650

Also available as prints and note cards.

As an artist, I am always fascinated by unusual uses of color and brilliant displays.  Sometimes I see runway models and print models with fabulous splashes of color and it inspires me to paint.  Although I could not use the vivid blues and turquoise of the make-up artist's work, which was what first attracted me, I turned a close-up image of her face and hands into a dancing angel with falcon wings and eyelashes.  I let her wings exhibit the fabulous colors.  And when I stood [transfixed, I admit it] before the finished painting, I was clueless as to what to name her.  Friends on the internet helped me with many lovely suggestions.  After reading about the Mizrahi dance, music and cultural/social movement, that had to be it! It fit perfectly; but even that name simply wasn't exuberant enough, so she became Beautiful Mizrahi.  I hope you will search online for Mizrahi music and listen.  It will bless you!

Zephaniah 3:17 (Amplified version)
The Lord your God is in the midst of you, a mighty One, a Savior - Who saves!  He will rejoice over you with joy; He will rest [in silent satisfaction] and in His love He will be silent and make no mention [of past sins, or even recall them]; He will exult over you with singing.  ... and somewhere it says: and dance over you with joy!  I figure if our Lord dances over His people with joy, the angels will all join in!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Worship


Worship

24" x 20"
Oil and Gold Leaf foil on canvas
SOLD

Available in prints and as note cards

This piece began as an emotive piece for me to stretch a little between other more realistic ones.  It was a "feel good" exercise, and to my surprise it kept right on making me feel good all the way to the finish!  It was really enjoyable to do a more abstracted image for a change.  Last year, 2010, was the first time I ever knew how much abstracted pieces would capture my focus and heart.  I did 14 of them last year!

The angels here, unlike the ones I've been painting recently, have no faces or distinctions between them.  They are worshipping God en masse, in a concert of gently swaying movements, with the hems of their garments seemingly flowing out from one garment of praise.

As I was working on this painting with great joy, I felt that the Lord let me know it was going to sell.  I was slightly frustrated with that news, since I'm still in the wrong-headed process of measuring the worth of abstracted pieces versus more realistic ones....

The woman who bought this (before it had even dried, within hours of my adding my signature!) said to me that these are the exact colors in their master bedroom, even down to the more copper tone I used on the gallery wrap edges!  As she drew close enough to see individual color dots in the wings, she exclaimed that the darker blues are the same shade as her accent pillows!  So, I don't know if you will agree with me, but my sense is that this piece was done FOR her, for her home, for her enjoyment and blessing.  This certainly is not close to any of my frequently chosen palettes.  And it makes me happy to have created something beautiful for someone else, like a commission piece, but without knowing ahead of time that was what I was doing!

Because she is military, I've chosen the following song of worship for this painting:

Revelation 15:4  "Great and wonderful are the things You have done,
                                      Adonai, God of heaven's armies!
                                        Just and true are Your ways,
                                             King of the nations!
                             Adonai, Who will not fear and glorify Your Name?
                                        Because You alone are holy,
                              All nations will come and worhsip before You,
                               For Your righteous deeds have been revealed.



Monday, June 13, 2011

Awaiting Resurrection


Awaiting Resurrection

18" x 36"

Acrylic on canvas, ornate frame

$900

After I came through a time of exhausting spiritual warfare, I turned to some reference photos taken in a cemetery in Huntington, West Virginia.  Painting this lovely statue brought me such peace.  I've got the feeling she represents Mary, the Mother of Jesus.  I have asked others why she would be holding a wreath on her arm, and their answers seem to match mine.  We're not sure, but it looks as if perhaps this is the crown of the redeemed which this person, over whom she is standing, will receive in heaven...  Why it would be flowers, I don't know.  (Since then, I have found many cemetery statues of angels holding floral wreaths, as well.)  I love her pensive stance, and the sweet patience she exudes.  She helped me to breathe deeply and bring my soul to a more restful place.  I hope she metes out the same kind of peace and well-being to you.

1 Thessalonians 4:16-17
For the Lord Himself will come down from heaven with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.  After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air.  And so we will be with the Lord forever.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Angel of Deliverance


Angel of Deliverance

30" x 50"
Acrylic on gallery wrap canvas

SOLD

Also available as prints and note cards.

Seemingly from the very beginning of man's understanding of Almighty God, I Am that I Am, El Shaddai (and all of the other names by which He's made Himself known) we have also heard of His ministering spirits.  He sends His angels on missions of mercy and missions of destroying wrath.  They tenderly guard children on their way and they destroyed all of Egypt's firstborn in the days of Pharaoh.  They worship at the throne of God and obey His commands.  One of my favorite contemporary Christian songs is Amy Grant's "Angels Watchin' Over Me".

When I set my heart on the painting of a descending angel coming to the rescue, I asked a fellow artist and friend of mine to model for me.  We weren't able to do the photo session in time for me to finish what I had purposed to undertake in time for my One Person Show called "Heaven Among Us", May of 2011.  We'll get that done one day.  But instead of postponing my idea any longer, I let it flow from my imagination.  Here is a less realistiic, more cartoon version of the Angel of Deliverance, who is coming to lift the viewer out of crisis and carry him/her off to safety.

Psalm 34:7
The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear Him, and he delivers them.


Note:  If you were looking for posts here in May, I apologize.  I was preparing and displaying my first One Person Show called "Heaven Among Us", and now finally have time to breathe.  And post.  :-)

If you are enjoying my blog and images, I hope you will become a 'follower', and send me a note or comment.  Blessings!