Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Churches and Chapels

[caption id="attachment_1948" align="alignleft" width="244"]Commission Naval Academy Chapel Gallery Wrapped Canvas 24x30 Commission
Naval Academy Chapel
Gallery Wrapped Canvas 24x30[/caption]

I am so glad you stopped by. Do your remember as a child intertwining your fingers and manipulating them to form a "church?" I would chant the rhyme, "Here's the church. Here's the steeple. Open the door and see all the people." Then I would open my hands and wiggle my fingers like crazy to represent all the "people."

I remembered that rhyme as I painted this commission piece of the Naval Academy chapel. I absolutely loved painting this piece. I painted this piece from  a photograph. I hope to see it in person one day. It is an absolutely gorgeous chapel with breathtaking details. Just from studying different photographs, I was moved by the grandeur of the architecture and the feeling of strength from the structure and size. From my pictures, I was mesmerized by the beauty of the landscaping. However, it was the steeple that caught my eye. I could hardly wait to paint that part of the chapel. I love to paint commissions, but this one truly stole my heart.

[caption id="attachment_1949" align="alignleft" width="234"]Rough Draft Rough Draft[/caption]

Since that commission, I've contemplated painting a series of churches and chapels. The idea hasn't made it out of my head into my art journal yet, but I am working on it. A couple of sundays ago, a precious man that I've known forever stood in front of the church and made a public profession of faith. In other words, at 95 years of age he humbly and sweetly recognized that he was a sinner and needed a savior. At 95, he asked Jesus to come into his heart. His sweet wife stood beside him weeping with joy, because she had been on her knees praying for him for 58 years to come to know Jesus. There wasn't a dry eye in the sanctuary that day. I don't even think the preacher closed in prayer that day,

[caption id="attachment_1950" align="alignleft" width="237"]Thinking about my paint. Layering color. Thinking about my paint.
Layering color.[/caption]

because of everyone filling the isle to wait their turn to wrap their arms around this man. That's what church is. It's not the steeple. It's not the door. Church is all the people. How on earth do you paint that?!

"For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son; that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life." John 3:16

Love love love Ruthie


  1. I can tell everyone that this painting is even more beautiful in person...love it and you!!!

  2. This is a beautiful story and a beautiful painting! I'm so glad you shared it!