I promise that this post is about art, but first it’s about money, because we don’t live in imaginary land and we can’t ignore it. Unfortunately.
A few years ago, in our second year of marriage, we went through a course called Financial Peace University. We learned some great wisdom and practices to implement into our lives to live within our means and succeed with money. We both had seen first hand from our parents massive mistakes regarding finances and we wanted to be smarter, to build a strong foundation. Within the first month of the program, Matt lost his job, when his employer went out of business. Thankfully, our needs were meant, side jobs, unemployment, provisions, we did not lack, but we couldn’t really begin our attack plan to destroy the debt we did have. We were in survival mode, and we were not alone, as the country entered the mess of a situation we still face.
It often feels like we are still in that place, where we always have enough, but not extra to chisel away the bills that do not shrink so easily. And you know, it’s life, this season of being a young family, living within our means, making it work. The process is a slow one and we know that if we are faithful to this lifestyle, we will see the benefits.
When we talk about dreams for our future, we speak of travel, art, missions, empowering others, and being supporters of dreams. But, every month that feels so far away, when I send off the payments to student loans and pesky credit card bills. Sometimes, we hope that those mountains will just dissolve, you know, who wouldn’t, but the truth is, we swiped the card, we signed the loan papers and there are great lessons to learn as we accept the results of those decisions.
Not too long ago, I prayed that God would show me ways that my creativity could be used to address this responsibility. Here’s a shocker, student loans don’t really care if you decided to become a stay-at-home mother and artist. And not for one second do I regret that experience or the amount I must repay, it was so defining to who I am, the people I know, and the places I’ve gone. Not for one second. Yet, my greatest endearments towards it all seem to have no erasing effect on the balance. So, I said that most earnest prayer and within 48 hours, I received a serious monsoon of inspiration.
A brand new collection came alive. Every free waking moment and some from my dreams have been dedicated to this production and I’m so eager to share it with you. It’s special to me, because I believe it was an answer to prayer and because it mixes my love of writing and art. Words and colors, the way I see the world; the way I share it. The idea was that each painting could be a page torn from a book, able to stand alone as a complete thought, but fit right into its place in a bigger story. Just like you and me.
Words in Color is a series of 15 small mixed media pieces. The originals will be available for purchase at a very affordable price, because I think art is meant to be shared rather than sitting in stacks in my home wearing a costly price tag. Prints will also be in stock. All the profits will go towards paying off chunks of the debts quicker, allowing us to have more freedom to give, and go, and empower.
What excites me the most about this collection is how as a whole it speaks of hope, beauty, dreams, adventure, love, and encouragement— the things that move us and connect us and challenge us.
You can find the entire collection here in my shop.