In the past it's debatable (at least I think so) of whether or not I am a Christian artist. I mean... what does that mean anyway? Does it mean that I create distinctively Christian artwork? OK, then what is distinctively Christian artwork? Perhaps it means that I profess myself to be a Christian and then I, in turn, create artwork and because I professed myself to be Christian in the first place then that automatically makes my artwork distinctively Christian?
I have been thinking about this and discussing it with my fine art department colleagues (at school/work) for quite some time now and none of us have know any of the answers. Something I do know (or at least am figuring out) though, is the fact that while I seek to glorify Christ every day with my life - what I am doing, saying, being motivated by, even how I think and feel - I really have questioned whether or not it all directs people specifically back to Him.
Years ago when I first discovered my calling to believe in Christ, I also discovered a Christian music artist by the name of Nichole Nordeman. She sings a song called "Legacy" and it talks specifically about what she hopes to leave behind her that tells about her life. (The song is not embedded for playback here because of some youtube restrictions - sorry about that. Click the link above though and you can see it on youtube.)
The song talks about how she wants to do great and wonderful things in her life that are remembered but what she really wants to do are things that distinctively direct everyone to look to the Lord above as the inspirations, reasons, and purpose of it all. That is pretty much how I feel and want I want for my time spent here CREATING art. I want it all to be for Him, by Him, and pointing to Him. This isn't because I'm trying to "Bible thump" around "draft" people into being Christians before the world is alleged to end or anything. (Seriously.) I do this because of what He has done for me in my life for me to have what I have.
I know I have alluded to the nature of what I am talking about before but I haven't ever actually really really discussed it in great detail and spelled out some of the intricacies of it all. It's actually not because I don't want to do that it's more because I almost can't. My testimony so hard to explain and it also takes a long LONG time. I think that the Lord is working in me for me to learn how to do this in words but as it is happening, He is showing me and teaching me how I can use my creativity and creation of visual art (in the meanwhile) to explain things best. What it boils down to is this: He took nothing and made it into something. Honestly and truly.
Before I discovered what is now an unwavering faith in the Lord above, I was doing a whole lot of nothing type things that only begat more nothing type things that only made my life empty as far as the eyes or imagination could see. It's hard for me to even openly acknowledge that here and now and see those words spelling it out as clear as day because I don't want to hurt anyone or anything that was somehow included in all of that that might suggest that they (too) were nothing in my life. (I don't think that's how it works anyway.) What I'm talking about is what I was doing way back then and what I personally had because of it. Even the artwork I was creating in that time was so labored through and (honestly) I don't know that any of it was all that good much less great. It was just... there. *shrug* Even when people would remark about it, there was nothing all that special or interesting to note of it. That's just how it was. And, for that reason, I questioned myself about whether or not I was worthy enough to even create artwork much less show it to anyone after it was done.
Things have very much changed since then. I mean, I am about seven years beyond a period of time that was very dark for me so a lot could certainly change for me but even this year? It's going to be ending on perhaps one of the highest notes I have ever known of my whole life. This is despite the fact that this year I have also experienced some of the deepest depths of despair of my life (not talking about art here but personal). Still, I firmly believe that the Lord has delivered me and will keep delivering me because - in the midst of it all - I professed Him as my Lord and savior even when I felt like things were being taken from me. I hailed Him as the sovereign God that He is even when things were happening that I felt like I didn't deserve and definitely didn't understand. I was tested and (I believe) He is affirming to me through my creative inspirations and abilities that I did pretty OK with all of those tests.
Below is a screenshot of my new website. It's got a new logo and visual branding, it's own very carefully selected custom domain that doesn't include my name, and it is intended to serve as a place where I will openly share the creations of His hand (through mine) for as far and to as many as the worldwide web will allow me to share.
|You can click the image above to access the website|
Anyway, you will now find this website in the center of the navigational bar of this site if you want to access it and follow the fine art endeavors the Lord is inspiring and enabling me to create. I will share some of it here (of course) but the finished pieces will reside on the creating for Him portfolio site. Please feel free to bookmark it or link to it! Thank you!