Category Archives: Pretty Pictures

Tulips = too beautiful

No time to blog at the moment — my next post will explain why — but I wanted to share this gorgeous ode to spring.

Enjoy!

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Pretty picture

Well, it’s finals week, and I’ve still got my heinous cold, and I spent a large part of the evening cleaning poo off of the floor (the horrifying legacy of an ill-fitting Pullup).  I will be suing Huggies for mental trauma.  And I will not be writing a blog post, because what I really need to do is go sit on the couch and stare at the TV for a while.

But I will offer you this picture.  I took it last summer, and I think it’s a beauty, more because of the colors of those flowers than any skill on my part.   It is pretty enough to take some of the edge off of the cold, and the grading, and the biohazard cleanup that occupied too much of my evening.  I hope it brings you a bit of joy, too.

 

 

Soul food

There’s an old Persian proverb that I’ve always loved:  “If you have two loaves of bread, sell one, and buy a hyacinth to feed your soul.”

Two bunches of daffodils work, too.

It’s okay that the weather outside is cold and wet and gray.  On my table, the sun is shining.

Spiritual mom-thought of the day


Mother is the name for God in the lips and hearts of little children.

                                         – William Makepeace Thackeray

 

 Madame Vigée-Le Brun et sa fille by Elisabeth Vigée-Le Brun

 

Pretty picture: I will lift up my eyes to the hills

Oof.  Long day of teaching + grading papers, and my brain is fried.  Time for a pretty picture.

The picture is called Among the Sierra Nevada Mountains, by the nineteenth-century painter Albert Bierstadt.  I’ve liked his work ever since I first saw a poster of it when I was in high school.  It captures that “wide open spaces” feeling that everyone associates with the American West.  The part of the west that I live in is anything but wide and open — crowded and laced with highways is more like it — but even so, this picture makes me pretty proud to be a California girl.

And don’t you just want to walk right into those clouds?  I love ‘em.

 

Flower power

Sweet peas from my very sweet neighbor.  I get a little lift every time I look at them.

How to make a woman feel special

The nicest kind of flowers are the “just because” kind.  I smile every time I look at these beauties (and believe me, I could use some smiles this week).   What a sweet hubby I have.

I hope my sons are taking notes.

Interview with an artist — Jennifer of Studio JRU

For the last two years, I’ve been a BIG fan of Jennifer at Studio JRU. She’s an artist with vision, soul … and a whole lotta talent.

I first got to know her when she did a series of photos honoring Mary (any friend of the BVM is a friend of mine!).  Her blog  became one of my go-to places for serenity and peace: it’s chock-full of gorgeous photography and beautiful images of her art.   After eyeing her art for quite a while, last summer I bought one of her woodblock pieces, which is right at home on my prayer desk.  I love it — it keeps the word of God right in front of my eyes.

So it’s a huge honor to welcome Jennifer to my blog, and to get a little window into her art and her creative life.  She graciously let me share some of my favorite images from her collection; anything you like here you can find on her blog (and lots more besides).  Enjoy!

For someone who didn’t know you, how would you introduce yourself and your art?

I would hope that my art is encouraging, inspiring and has meaning. It is important to me that things in my home are meaningful, so I want my art to be that for someone as well. My art is about love and family and hope and God’s grace. I find His word peaceful and comforting. I hope others see that through the art.

One reason I love your art is because it often incorporates text along with images.  (I’m a huge word gal!).   Are there certain Bible verses, or other sayings or quotes that are particularly meaningful to you?

I love, love, love words too, Ginny! It is way too hard for me to chose a specific bible verse or other quote that is meaningful to me. Too many to pick from! Honestly, whenever I come across a verse or quote that makes me say, “Ohh… I love that!” I write it down. And that happens often. I have pieces of paper everywhere with a saying written on it for ‘later’ use.

What is a typical day in the studio like for you?

I divide my studio time between business and blog and my art. So there are days that I am doing more of the business end of things, like working on blog posts, responding to emails, paperwork… those sorts of things. Then are the fun days that I come up to my studio in the morning, make a fun mess with papers and paints all day, then go back downstairs in the evening. I am blessed that I can work from my home!

What is the biggest joy (or joys) of doing what you do?

The biggest joy is when I hear from people how much a piece of art meant to them. When you can touch the life of someone you never met… through a God given talent… it is just the best feeling ever. I will never tire of hearing how much someone loves to see God’s word everyday on a piece of art I made.

Does Mary have any influence on your creative life, or on your life in general?

I find Mary to be such a comfort in my life. Who would not love to have an ‘extra’ mother to comfort and love them? She is also such an inspiring woman. Brave and loving, compassionate and strong.

Sometimes it can be scary to live the creative life. What would you say to a person who has the desire to create something (art, writing, music, etc.) but is afraid to start?

To anyone who has the desire to create but is afraid I would say listen to that inner voice and just start. God has put it in your heart, so there is no need to be afraid. Your heart will thank you when you are able to let your creativity flow!

If people want to know more about your art, where can they go?

People can come to my (new) blog for more information about my art. I have links there for my shop, for my art in the DaySpring shop, and updated ‘news’ when I have new art coming out!

http://www.studiojru.com/blog



All images copyright Studio JRU.

A whole lotta cozy

Listening the rain on a Sunday morning.  I’m the only one out of bed at the moment — a rare experience, as Matthew usually serves as the family alarm clock.  The world outside is gray, but everything inside is warm and cozy and quiet.

It’s a pretty nice start to the day.

Renoir, Les Parapluies

Random pretty picture

Was it Renoir who said that a painting should, above all, be pretty?

If so, he sure followed his own advice with this one.

Le Déjeuner des Canotiers by Pierre-Auguste Renoir