Redemption and Revitalization

The other day I made an ATC titled “Redemption”, shown below. This particular card isn’t specifically a trader card, but is a thank you card (called a “hostie”) for someone who hosted a swap back in the Jan-Feb 2013 timeframe. Generally for a hostie, I will read through this person’s profile and pick a theme I think she will like. In this case, her profile listed numerous likes, such as dark angels, anything Moroccan (particularly doorways), rain, sadness, and women’s faces. Instead of picking just one, I mashed them all up into a single card, which I saw as the baptism of a dark angel – an angel of darkness coming to see and be baptized into the light. I had a lot of fun doing this card. So much so that I kind of forgot to take interim photos of the progress. Oops! At least being “in the flow” is a good thing.

Redemption - an Artist's Trading Card
Redemption – an Artist’s Trading Card

Shortly after completing this card, I found out about the 30 Day Challenge run by the same people who run Screw Work, Let’s Play. The idea is to complete a project, any project, in the space of 30 days, and committing a minimum of 20 minutes a day to accomplishing the project. I like these kinds of projects, because I seem to have a short attention span, and a scatterbrained approach to doing things I want to do. My current default strategy is, generally:

  1. Complain that I don’t have enough time.
  2. Miraculously get a huge amount of time.
  3. Waste it all on something that totally doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of things (to me), like Facebook or finding the perfect slow cooker roast chicken recipe.
  4. Run out of time until I’m burnt out on work or whatever commitment that is actually occupying my time.
  5. Completely neglect whatever I’m burnt out on, and go nuts on what I want to do deep down inside, until I burn out on that.
  6. Go back spitefully to the other commitments I was initially burnt out on, because stuff is now due.
  7. Rinse and repeat.

As you might guess, this is neither a good nor an effective strategy for maximizing my time and talent (not to mention, sleep).

I have, however, figured out exactly what I want to do for a 30-day project, which has two facets:

  1. Create a painting for each one of Pope John Paul II’s Wednesday audiences (of which there are 129 or 133, depending on who you talk to) on the topic of the Theology of the Body. Don’t worry, I only plan to do paintings for the first two in the 30 days allotted, but the 30-day project is to ensure I have a foundation to do the rest. Woot! Aaaaaaand…
  2. Revitalize this blog by using it to record my journey, both artistic and spiritual, as I work my way through these paintings and readings.

I chose this project because back in January, I attended the Theology of the Body 1: Head and Heart Immersion course from the Theology of the Body Institute. At first I had a hard time getting into it (not to mention, actually getting to it physically), but by the end, it was totally rocking my world and the way I saw both the Church and everything around me. And that’s with only just barely scratching the surface of the topic, my little brain trying to wrap itself around a way of thinking that is so fundamentally different from what we see all around us in society and the media today. I knew I wanted to express both some of the ideas and my relationship to them through my art. Now’s my opportunity (read: kick in the butt) to get started. Fittingly, the 30 Day Challenge runs through the month of March, ending the day before Easter.

Stay tuned – it’s going to be quite a journey, and I’m ready to go! The first canvas, 30″ x 40″ is loaded up on the easel and ready to go, just waiting to see what I’m going to put on it. I can’t wait to find out, either!

Canvas on easel
First 30″ x 40″ canvas is ready for the 30 Day Challenge!

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