Once upon a time, I did art.
My grandmother taught me to paint watercolors. I would escape with my great aunt to magically beautiful places she once shared with her sister — but now it was she that was teaching me to paint. I went to college and became an art major. I was an art major. That now seems baffling.
Sometimes, every now and again, I’ll do some art. I’ve set up a studio in each home I’ve had and sometimes I even use it. There is even evidence on this blog. Oh, you can even find hints that I took my paints outside like I was taught to do by my masters. I’ve painted prayers and even wrote about it for Fidelia’s Sisters. A few weeks ago, I went into my studio and did that thing that I do where I pretend I’m going to paint again. I painted and then it… stopped.
I need a burst of creativity so I’m going to claim it for Advent. My whole world feels like it’s turning upside down as I try to figure out exactly what’s next after I leave Olympia to follow my heart. Will I have job? Will I be in ministry? What in the world is going to happen? I don’t have answers to these questions even though I’m working really hard at figuring it out. This is something artists know. Staring at blank paper or a lump of clay, they don’t always know what is going to happen. They don’t know what they will create. Michelangelo is said to have seen what form needed to exist in each piece of marble he chose, but I don’t buy it. Genius though he might be. It’s not how it works for me. Creating always starts with a gesture. It starts with a movement that slowly begins to fill in the page until something starts to appear. Something like the Christ Child or something like art.
So, I started with that burst. I created an image of the cover of the bulletin that will slowly morph into something new over the next few weeks. But, for now, this image speaks to what I imagine God is doing in Isaiah 64:1-9.
I’m hoping that this burst of creativity doesn’t stop with me. Inspired by the talented and fabulous Theresa Cho, my church is going to journal their way through Advent. The kids made these terrific journals and we sold out of all of them in one Sunday. I’m still shocked by this. So, I created a guide for the DIY version which you can find here. Follow along with your own burst of creativity.