A friend asked me to create a painting of her boyfriend’s three cats. It will be a birthday present from her to him. She gave me no further instructions, but she did provide photos and a brief “bio” of each of the cats.
I composed two artworks, but felt I wasn’t done exploring ideas. I asked God to help me create something good.
When I stopped in at the library, as I do from time to time, I picked up a free copy of an archaeology magazine. One of the articles included a beautiful photograph of ancient Egyptian art. The simple lines and rich, earthy colors intrigued me. I’d never created artwork representing Egyptian designs before. This was new territory for me artistically.
I drew the three cats in a style similar to images in Egyptian art and included random hieroglyphs.
I’m a Christian artist, but I don’t necessarily create art with Christian images. I try to be very sensitive and discerning about what images and messages my art conveys. My art must not offend God or somehow depart from His will. So, now I found myself at a standstill with the Egyptian-style cat artwork.
I wanted to include the ankh symbol, which in my mind, symbolically epitomizes Egypt. I wondered, would including the ankh in my art be un-Christian?
The ankh was included. I can’t tell you why I thought it was OK to go ahead and include the ankh, just that when I’m on the wrong path, I become uneasy and unsure about what to do. When I’m on the right path, I feel no shame or misgivings.
My friend saw the three artworks I’d created, and decide to buy two of them. She “LOVED!!!!” the Egyptian-style piece.
Here’s what leads me to believe God was actively involved: When my friend came to pick up the artwork, she told me that her boyfriend has been collecting art with ankhs on it for years. He even has an ankh tattoo. I knew none of this beforehand.