Friday, March 30, 2012

Evolution of a Landscape; Oil and palate knife

This is just a quick video I put together showing the progression of the painting below.  I LOVED doing this one.  My next painting at the studio will be a sea scape and even a bit more challenging.  Stay tuned for more progress!

Landscape with Poppies Study
Oil on Canvas with Palate Knife
by Cheryl Harris White
24" x 20"

completed at A Touch Of Paris Studio

Thursday, March 29, 2012

But the Lord looks at the HEART

But the LORD looks at the HEART
Journal page inspired by I Samuel 16:7
by Cheryl Harris White

For this page I used a black water color wash, and red and orange oil pastels.  Written on the heart, is the Bible Verse from I Samuel 16:7 and around the outside is my prayer.  I dare you to pray it too and just wait and see what happens.

Inside the heart it says... "For the LORD sees not as man sees, For man looks at the outward appearance, But the LORD looks at the HEART." 

I thought today would be an appropriate time to reflect on my list of 1000 gifts.  Each gift on the list records a moment when God showed up in some real way.  What I learned from doing this was, that whether or not I choose to notice or acknowledge God and the good things He does give us every day... He is still there and He is really good.  I've noticed that whenever a horrible catastrophe occurs or and accident happens, people are quick to say, "Where was God when that happened?" or "If God is good, then why this or that?"  or "This isn't fair, why me, I deserve better... etc " I understand this line of thought, because I've been there too, asking the same whining questions, and that thought process lead me to nowhere but pain and anger, depression and frustration.  Writing this list didn't change the bad things that happen in our world.  There was still dying, wars, hunger, tragedies going on, but it changed me.  Instead of focusing on the negatives, it lead me to focus on the many small positive things and grew an attitude of thankfulness inside my heart.  Instead of arguing with God part of the time and doubting He even cared the rest of the time, I was drawn to know Him more.  He does have good things to give us, if we would just quit worrying about what we don't have, and focus on what He is doing and trust Him, we would all see. I learned that God cares and He shows us in a million different ways a day, invisible ways that most people never see.  I've been lucky enough to simply notice 1,000 of them and I feel blessed.  

Friday, March 23, 2012

Sow with Tears, Reap with Joy 1000 Gifts 981 - 1000

Reap with Joy
Journal Page inspired by Psalms 126:5-6
by Cheryl Harris White

I loved how this one turned out.  I found this picture in a magazine and matched the colors from the background with water color.  Then I used black water color and tilted my sketchbook up to let them run.  On the left I listed things that bring tears and on the right listed things that bring Joy. . . 

My List of 1000 Gifts Continued....

981) Watching Caleb's team play baseball with Barbara and Tommy                                                                                 
982) Sunshine on the weekend
983) Courtney's confidence in her decisions
984) Caleb's determination 
985) A comfy reading chair in my art studio
986) A great night of discussion with my book study group
987) More ideas than I have time to paint
988) Courtney's beautiful singing
989) True friends
990) Caleb's high five
991) Learning something new every time I go to art class
992) Flowers growing in our yard
993) Taking a stand for what I believe is right
994) A 30 minute nap at lunch time today
995) Character when faced with a difficult choice
996) Resolve to change for the better
997) Purpose at work
998) Spiritual Direction
999) Significance in Christ
1000) Looking at the life I have and feeling an overwhelming sense of awe, gratefulness, and joy.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

A Little Rain Must Fall

A Little Rain Must Fall 
Journal Page in water color
by Cheryl Harris White

This was easy.  I drew five swirly circles with ink.  Then filled each one with a splotch of matching water color and tilted up my notebook and let the paint drip down to make the stems.  A wash of green for grass and greyish blue for sky and I was done.

Friday, March 16, 2012

He keeps my tears in a bottle and 1000 Gifts 961 - 980

Tears in a bottle
Journal Page inspired by Psalm 56:8
by Cheryl Harris White

This one is kind of deep, so I'll let you all wade through it yourselves.  I did the bottles and cup with water color crayons, the background is a combination of oil pastel and collage of torn paper.  
My List of 1000 Gifts Continued....

961) Hot cleansing tears
962) Grief so I better understand the sorrows of others
963) Knowing My sorrows do matter
964) Knowing that joy comes in the morning
965) and it is all the sweeter then
966) Psalm 56:8
967) Being a mom
968) Being free
969) Seeing plans come to fruition
970) Watering the flowers
971) Drinking in nature's beauty
972) The sound of life in the trees
973) The smell of earth
974) The sun
975) Being life giving
976) Bits of paper and glue telling a story
977) Laughing with friends old and new
978) Each numbered day unwasted
979) Photographs 
980) Worms, because if they are there I know it's good dirt

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Seeing with the eyes of God

Seeing with the EYES of GOD
Journal page inspired by Romans 5:8
by Cheryl Harris White


Friday, March 9, 2012

If I am a SHEEP and 1000 Gifts 941-960

If I am a sheep
Journal Page Collage
inspired by Isaiah 53:6
by Cheryl Harris White

I thought this turned out really cool.  That's all I'll say about this one... and here is some more of my list! ALMOST to 1000!

941) Waking from a delicious sleep
942) Bulbs
943) Pansies
944) The first pink rose of the season
945) Work
946) Rest
947) Grass
948) Isaiah
949) Being loved
950) Belonging
951) Father and son talking 
952) A gorgeous day outside
953) Goals
954) My family working as a team
955) Hot water
956) Digging and planting in good dirt
957) Water in the bird bath
958) Flowers in the earth
959) Geraniums
960) Sore muscles

Monday, March 5, 2012


Journal page by Cheryl Harris White

I'm not really any more, but there was a time in my painting when I felt at war with color. . . in the very beginning.  I had a love / hate relationship with it.  Since then I've learned so much about color and how to mix it and make it work for me.  I make it do what I want it to do now, but it wasn't always that way.  I can say I LOVE color now and it loves me back. The black and white side was done with sketching pencils and the color side is a collage of photos, paper, stickers and magazine scraps.  

Sunday, March 4, 2012


Journal Page in Oil Pastel
inspired by the many mistakes I've made in my life
by Cheryl Harris White

I almost didn't post this one because it is so ugly.  But when I think about sin, that's really what it is.... ugly.  The letters are dark grey, sick with hints of green and yellow.  
The words inside the letters say... "Sin always costs you more than you can afford to pay...Keeps you longer than you want to stay... and always hurts deeper than they say. " The red at the top of the letters represents that our sins were paid for with the sacrifice of blood... Christ's blood shed to forgive us, through his death on the cross. 

The trouble with sin really, is naming and measuring it.  People have so many different perspectives on what sin is and what it isn't.  My view is, that sin is anything that separates me farther from God.   I believe that we all need to worry less about which of our sins was worse or better, or what degree of sin we've been involved in.  Some people even like pointing out how horrible the sins of others are in an effort to make themselves feel better about their own small ones.  What a mess.  Sin is sin. It's very dangerous, painful and expensive, and we are all guilty of it.

I've found it's much better to quit obsessing over all that.  Instead I prefer to simply focus more on activities and routines that draw me closer to God.  After all, He's the One who paid for all our sin in the first place, and He is really the only One who knows or needs to know what each one cost.  Shifting my focus onto who God is and how I can know Him has made all the difference.  As a result, I still sin, but I'm not overwhelmed by it.  I know God loves me, I'm much happier, and I seem to do much better at staying out of trouble. 

Friday, March 2, 2012

Psalm 139 Art Journal Page

Art Journal Page
Mixed Media
by Cheryl Harris White
Inspired by Psalms 139:16-18

13 “For You formed my inward parts;
You wove me in my mother’s womb.
14 I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Wonderful are Your works,
And my soul knows it very well.
15 My frame was not hidden from You,
When I was made in secret,
And skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth;
16 Your eyes have seen my unformed substance;
And in Your book were all written
The days that were ordained for me,
When as yet there was not one of them.”

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Art Journal and 1000 gifts 921 - 940

In March, I'll be posting some of my favorite art journal pages.  To do these, I use pretty much anything on hand...watercolor, oil pastels, collage, stickers, stencils, stamping, marker, colored pencils.  For me, a journal page is inspired by something I am learning or studying, usually from the Bible, but sometimes just a poem or even a quote or thought that is meaningful to me.  It is a creative outlet combining journaling with a visual image or reminder of what is impacting to me, what I am praying about, or struggling with.  There are lots of blogs and websites devoted strictly to art journals and I found most of them inspiring.  I think anyone can benefit from keeping some form of a journal,  I just prefer to do mine visually.  So, just for March, I'll be sharing some photos of a few of my recent art journal efforts.

Art Journal Page
Mixed Media
by Cheryl Harris White

The background is a combination of water color crayon and blue and brown paper.  I dipped my foot in red paint and stepped on the page and accidentally splattered a bit.  Then I decided I liked the red spatters and did more on purpose.  I really liked adding the road at the bottom.  It was a sticker I found in my old scrapbooking supplies.  The center is a picture of Vincent Van Gogh's Japanese Bridge in the Rain 1887.  This page encouraged me to start something big, even though at first it seemed overwhelming.

My list of 1000 Gifts continued...

Friday, March 2nd, 2011  

921) Duke back after his long trip away
922) Last lunch with my Dad before he drove back home
923) High five with an 86 year old hand and mine
924) Art journaling with my daughter
925) Shivering through the first scrimmage of the baseball season 
926) The look on my baseball son's face after playing
927) Surprise visits
928) Sharing my art with others
929) A job so close to my home
930) The smell of spring starting in my backyard
931) Helping my dad tape up his car window
932) Getting to eat chocolate without a migraine
933) The absence of constant pain
934) A sky full of red
935) Sitting outside on a bench in the middle of a beautiful day watching Titus
936) Bulbs
937) Birds singing
938) Just enough being more than enough
939) Decent report cards
940) Seeing life as a journey