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Wednesday, February 20, 2013

The Fire Within

The Fire Within, 11.5 x 9" Colored Pencil on Paper
©2013, Helen Read 
Ready to mat and frame

A magnified view of the intricacies of an orchid.  As I worked on this, it seemed that tongues of fire were spilling out of the center. 

Monday, February 18, 2013

Winter Wood

Winter Wood, 8x6" Oil on Canvas
©2013, Helen Read 


The sunshine created such interesting shadows on the snow!  I was intrigued by that and also the way the small branches disappeared into the sunlight on the tops of the trees.  This scene, I hope, will intrigue the viewer's eye as well. Amazing! Light and shadow, dark and light!  Winter lends itself to seeing this stark beauty.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Abstract in its final form

As yet, this painting is untitled, and it is the first of a "Picture Story" series that I have in mind.  I've included some of my process steps, too, below the final image above.  My inspiration for this is Genesis 1:1.  This verse speaks of the beginning of things - God created the heavens and the earth, and the earth was dark and formless and void.   And yet, even in its darkness and shapelessness, God had an intention for the planet he was creating.  His Spirit is hovering over it in anticipation of what will be. 

I created this piece with many (countless) small circles and dots.  It (of course) started with sketches.  Then a large circular, spiraling shape was added.  To me, this represents shapelessness - things were holding together, but without form.  In art, form speaks of 3 dimensions, while shape implies a flatness.  My interpretation of this is that at this point, our earth was a swirling arrangement of elements and did not resemble anything known.  I used dark colors and values, yet if you look deeply, you will still see the remnants of the spiral which is part of the under painting.

I chose to depict the idea of the Spirit of God in luminous colors... but also with dots and circles. 
These colors are mixed with metallic and iridescent paints to give a shimmering glow to the colors.  And, the way I've expressed the Spirit is with encircling, enfolding bands of green, blue and rose colors.  The Spirit of God is part of the Trinity, possessing the character of God - which includes Joy, Love, and Wisdom.  The circles and dots are joyful in appearance - and that is exactly how I imagine the heart of God as He hovered over - protectively watching, waiting with anticipation as creation would unfold.  Nothing was haphazard here - God had a wonderful intention for his creation.  And yet, even at this earliest point - a time before time - as He looked forward with wisdom and knowledge, He also knew He would have to redeem his creation.  There is that hint within this painting.  If you look very closely, you will see small drops of red in the lower left third.  This represents the redeeming love of God, who would Himself become the means of our redemption. 

There is much to see in this painting - and even more to contemplate.  I hope that it speaks of something deeper than interesting shape,  texture and color.  I hope it's message speaks of beauty, yes, but also a sense of mystery as the viewer reflects upon its deeper story.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Snowy Wood

Snowy Wood, 9x6" Oil pastel on paper
©2013, Helen Read 
Ready to mat and frame

Yesterday, while the northeastern part of our country was digging out of a major snowstorm, I took a walk in my area and noticed the beautiful shadows in blue on the inch or snow we've gotten this week.  Its been an unusually light year for snow (and I'm not complaining). 

The shadows were very blue and really quite lovely. The dark vertical lines of the woods were striking.  This oil pastel sketch may well become a larger oil painting! 

Friday, February 8, 2013

Special Offer ~ Strawberries for Valentines!

Berry Bowl, 6x6" Oil on canvas
©Helen Read, 
ready to frame

Be my Valentine!
Just through Valentine's Day - a Sweet Deal!
This small still life - featuring large red strawberries in a heart shaped bowl - is usually
priced at $100.  
For this week only (until Valentine's Day), I'm offering a
special price of just

(Please add $10.00 shipping in the US, and IL residents please add 8.25% sales tax) 


Saturday, February 2, 2013

Nearing completion

Abstract - acrylic on paper - 22x30"

If you scroll backwards a bit, you'll see the way this has been taking shape. 
It is coming forth... but now, I need to stop and listen to what it is speaking to me. 
More is needed, but exactly what that will be - needs to be revealed. 
Maybe my next posting will be its final form! 
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