Tuesday, July 28, 2015


Artist's are often asked where they get their artistic inspiration. I have read so many answers from a variety of artists, including some who say that inspiration has nothing to do with it, rather it is a matter of simply building a practice of making art every day. I personally need inspiration. I have written in the past about how I can get a spark of inspiration from simple things. Things in nature especially inspire me as I reflect on God's Creation. But even things as simple as a pattern in wallpaper or the shape of an architectural feature can spark my inspiration. One of the most important things I have learned about myself, and especially the artist within me, has been discovering how closely connected my emotional energy and my time spent connecting to God through His Word and prayer are for my artistic inspiration. When either of those two things are out-of-whack then my artistic inspiration is also and I experience dry times. So, for art, as well as other aspects of my life, I have been learning that I need to constantly work on and adjust my rhythm or pace of life in order for me to maintain a healthy me - emotionally, spiritually, and artistically. I find a vicious circle at work in times when I have not kept balance to my emotional and spiritual pace and health: because I am drained of energy I struggle to create, and I create and play with art as one of my ways for emotional balance and to restore emotional energy. This is one reason why I chose {renew} as my word for this year. Learning what renews my energy has had a significant impact on my journey out of burn-out and this year it feels like that journey has gained upward momentum. So, I have been praying for God to renew some of the areas of my life that were affected the most by the burn-out I experienced in the past few years.
In July for Take Me Deeper, the weekly devotion and Bible study at His Kingdom Come, our theme has been honor. I really connected with some of the verses in the book of Revelation that point us to giving glory and honor to God, so those verses became my theme for my art journal pages to go along with the devotions. Another theme popped up as I made my pages - leaves. I usually do my pages one at a time each week, but I had had a spark of creative energy and decided to make my page backgrounds in one sitting. I selected my passages and I made my pages for the whole month all at the same time. I'm going to show them all together...and spoiler alert: Even though this Friday is week 5 of the July devotions, I am showing my art journal page for that day early in order to show them all together. 

The leaves didn't end up on every page but seeing this theme emerge made me think about how leaves really symbolize renewal for me. I love Spring. It's the season of renewal. I love to watch the trees daily become full as the leaves grow. There are so many shades of green in the Spring. The world is fresh and new again after the cold, gray winter. So, it seems that leaves make a perfect symbol for my word this year.

In the past week I've had the pleasure of finding out that I have been inspiration to others in their art. Valerie Sjodin mentioned that she had been inspired by posts about my use of circles on my art pages, You can see her art here. And then the other day I got a note from Leigh Ann Napier that she had mentioned in a Facebook post that she had made a piece of art inspired by one of my sunburst collage pages. Leigh Ann used her sunburst collage to make a vision board for her family's values. Here is her piece:

Inspiration is one of the main reasons I decided to accept the invitation to be a part of the foundation team for the His Kingdom Come community. I wanted to be a part of a group that inspired others to go deeper in their relationship with God and to express that faith through creativity. I hope you connect with the things that inspire you this week,


  1. Thank you so much for your wonderful words and inspiration Mary.
    Alison x

  2. Such beautiful inspiration this is Mary! Love your work and your heart!

  3. Oh, I just knew they would be amazing all together! I can just see them framed and hanging on a wall next to one another. Each one is beautiful in and of itself, but all together they are amazing and powerful! I am SO blessed to get to experience the work of so many different creators!

  4. Great post Mary!!! Love your artwork so much!!