I've always loved to create. Making art gives me a sense of purpose and I really feel like I'm honoring God when I'm painting. It's kind of like that line from Chariots of Fire, where competitive runner Eric tells his sister, "When I run, I feel God's pleasure."
For years I've carried around this mental image of God as the Master Artist and me as the Little Artist, reflecting his glory by painting his creation. So making art gives my life meaning and significance.
Selling my art, bringing joy to people’s lives by capturing their children, deepens my satisfaction and pleasure in making art. Knowing that I’m serving people in helping them celebrate the relationship they have with their children – it’s a truly beautiful calling.
Some of the moms I work with prayed for years to have children. They’ve prayed, their families have prayed; that’s how bad they wanted to be moms and that’s how much their children mean to them. I was talking with a mom yesterday who said when she had her first son, she knew she loved him unconditionally. She knew she would give her life for him.
The relationship between a parent and a child is the closest picture we have of the way God loves us. That’s why being a parent is such an awesome responsibility. I've heard it eloquently expressed as a call to servanthood. A call to lay down your life.
My job is to help parents express their unconditional love for their children and help children feel valued. If someone commissions art in your honor, it's because you are loved. Through my art, I help parents tell their children they are loved and valued.
Growing up, I didn’t have the best relationship with my mom. I mostly blame myself - those terrible teen years when it's your job to be mean to mom. But also my parents had a difficult marriage and my mom’s relationship with my grandmother was strained. So all of this affected us.
But as I was journaling and reflecting, it inspired me to write her a note telling her how much I appreciate her and everything she’s done for me. I told her she is a gift from God to me, and to never doubt that she is a good mother.
It’s a blessing to be reminded of the gift of motherhood daily in my work. And thanks to all the moms out there for the daily laying down your life and for the privilege to paint your greatest treasure- your children.