Thursday, February 28, 2013

Salvation Offered Freely to All

The final artwork as installed in the narthex at the Church of the Resurrection in Wheaton, Illinois.
 The first five of the Old Testament paintings is on the right side of the door.

The large center doors leading into the sanctuary and the last five Old Testament based paintings are on the left side.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Inspiration and research

Now that the canvas with Isaiah 55 is safely hanging in the narthex at Church of the Resurrection , (along with the other nine Old Testament paintings) it is time to post about some of the thoughts and research that went into the work. Here are some of the images gathered from the history of art.

Moses Drawing Water From the Rock Tintoretto 1577

 The Jews in the Desert             Tintoretto 
Mount Sinai  El Greco (1541-1614) 
 Moses strikes water from the stone by Francesco Bacchiacca (1540)
 Manna reigning from heaven on the Israelites (Exodus 16) circa 1250 Maciejowski Bible

 Painting on the wall of an early Christian catacomb. (the Cubiculum of the Sheep) Moses unlacing his sandals.  Moses striking a rock to get water in the desert.

And here is one of my favorite paintings. Master of the Gathering of the Manna 1470 This is from a medieval Book of the Hours painted by a Dutch artist.

The central figure in the medieval work of art above inspired my figure here.

And  this mother with her infant gathering manna to feed her family.

I took a lot of ideas from the magnificent rock formations in the El Greco painting above.
El Greco is also the inspiration to create this textural fire for the pillar of fire to guide the Israelites by night.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Come to the water

Isaiah 55

1. Come, all you who  are thirsty,
 come to the waters;

and you who have no money,

    come, buy and eat!

 Come, buy wine and milk
 without money and without cost.
Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy?Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and you will delight in the richest of fare.

Give ear and come to me; listen, that you may live.I will make an everlasting covenant with you, my faithful love promised to David.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Which one of these would you be?

What if free food was all over the ground, (and it tasted delicious) and you were really hungry after wandering in the desert for forty years? How would you respond? Which one of these would you be?


                     This hungry guy?

Or this fellow stuffing his face?
Would you just sit down right where you are and go for the bread and honey?

Or would you be prompted by gratitude to wonder where all the good free food was coming from and offer thanks?

Would you be like these people?

Why spend money on what is not bread,
    and your labor on what does not satisfy?
Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good,
    and you will delight in the richest of fare.
Give ear and come to me;
    listen, that you may live.
I will make an everlasting covenant with you,
    my faithful love promised to David.  Isaiah 55

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Ready to leave the studio and go back to church

Isaiah 55:1-11   1 “Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk   without money and without cost. 2 Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy? Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and you will delight in the richest of fare.

I have been working on this canvas in my studio for a few weeks now and tomorrow is finally the day. 

I feel that it is finished, and I will return it to the church wall to become part of the permanent display again.

The people are not ghostly white any more, a lot of texture and depth with glazing has been worked in. 

(image at left is from before) I posted about this here.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

sunny but cold

Detail of  Sunflower painting, 2009 series acrylic on canvas, 30"x40".
Arranged my living room with new blue print pillow covers for the couch. To match the new pillows and boost the sunny but cold day, I hung  one of my sunflower canvases over the couch.

It is hanging too high for correct proportions but that is where the nail is in the wall and I am afraid to put another hole in the wall.
I like to change the wall frequently with a current painting or something from the storage closet that suits the season.
This sometimes gives my family a start when they realize the living room is changed again. But, now, they take it in stride.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Valentines Day, this is what love looks like

Illustrations by Janice Skivington for "Where Do Babies Come From?".  Concordia Publishing House.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

lucky day

Pen and ink on newsprint. Line drawing from a class model during my Art Center days.

Is it our lucky day? Could it be that 02/13/2013 is a lucky number?

 Today is also Ash Wednesday and I would prefer just being blessed today.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Yesterday Today & Tomorrow

At the Garfield Park Conservatory sketching, this interesting sign was in front of a colorful shrub. Could that be the common name? I don't know, I just recorded my impressions.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Thursday, February 7, 2013

color cravings

The entire world has gone black and white and gray. I need a dose of bright green to keep my eyes and heart going. I need some humid earthy-smelling air to breath instead of a brittle frozen gasp that makes me cough. Just the right dose of medicine was available to me today as I spent an afternoon at the Garfield Park Conservatory in Chicago. This is a beautiful spot in the city, and a perfect place to spend a winter day. A soaring glass and iron structure filled with 60 ft tall palm trees, giant ferns, and orchids.
I had my sketchbook and pens along while visiting with a friend, and the hours just sped by while we were lost in a multi-colored jungle. Humid warm air and a tangle of foliage would not be as wonderful were it not the middle of winter. Some things just have a time and season to be absolutely precious.
As soon as I get my sketches scanned I will post them.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

working today on Salvation

Cold, gray and snowy outside makes for an excellent day to work hard inside the studio. Today I am working on one of the Church of the Resurrection Old Testament panels. These are 5ft by3ft canvases. There are 10 in all. This one is number 7 in the series. I have brought it home from the church in order to get the finishing touches accomplished in my own studio.

One problem, among many, is that the church staff want me to return these paintings to the hanging spot in the narthex every Sunday. They don't want a blank spot on the wall!
Although it disrupts my work process, I will paint all day and get it back on the wall tomorrow morning. My plan is to take a painting off the wall every Sunday as if I  am checking out a library book and work on them steadily throughout the Lenten season until I get them all to that finished stage where I can be contented with the display at Eastertide.

Isaiah 55:1-11 is the seventh of the readings for the Great Easter Vigil. The first verse contains these words, "Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat!"
We have chosen to illustrate this prophetic reading with the story of the Israelites in the desert gathering manna and drinking water from a rock all provided by the grace of God.

At this stage in the painting process I need to apply glazes and more modeling on the figures. They are not supposed to be ghostly and white! I am going for an earth tones color scheme over all.

Friday, February 1, 2013

I owe so much

My study detail from Rembrandt "Return of the Prodigal Son" to the left.

Blogging was new to me about five years ago and I must confess to how many hours I wasted going from one link to another. I was so inspired by reading and looking at other artists' work that I felt I should blog too.  I had so much in my sketchbooks and hidden in files that I wished to share but could never get anyone to sit still in my studio for long enough.

Four years and a month ago I started Skivington So Far. Now I have another blog site that is devoted to my flower paintings and nothing else. Janice Skivington Paints Flowers.
I have kept up a website of my illustration work separately for much longer.

I owe so much to the online presence of so many artists who share so generously. I am going to mention some here just to share what they have meant to me. One of the very first is Elizabeth Dulemba, her website is here. Elizabeth posts almost daily and I read her blog for a variety of news in the children's publishing industry, tips on writing, illustrating and more. She was so generous way back when I was first working on gathering my work for a website. I wrote to her with questions and received immediate help. Just what I needed from a pro and more than I could ever have found on my own. This is an example of the very best of what the web could be when all are open to sharing information. Unfortunately too, I recently read her post on how much of her line art is being used everywhere without permission.
Frank Ordaz and James Gurney are two other artists whose blogs I have found so instructional and inspiring. I have seen their work for years, (I have bought all of James Gurney's Dinotopia books for my kids) and didn't realize that they are both alumni of The Art Center College of Design as am I. I have learned so much reading their how-to articles, explanations of color palettes, and painting technique that I feel it has been a graduate course for me.
Another artist whose blog writing has been the equivalent of graduate school is Stapleton Kearns. He is a scholar and a gentleman with an old-fashioned intense disciplined approach to the work of painting. He is also funny but incredibly informative. I thought so much of him that I went to one of his workshops on landscape painting. It was worth it.
There are many more I could mention, I am always being accused by my family of wasting time reading blogs. If they could only understand how very much I have learned and still expect to learn.