Mary, Mother of Hope

I have new art.

After taking a bit of a hiatus from painting and drawing, I decided I needed to get back to it with a new medium… or a somewhat newMary-with-child medium: watercolor pencils. I’m not really new to watercolor, though it’s never been my favorite. But somehow having the paints start out in pencil-form made it so much more fun.

This piece is actually a combination of watercolor and marker. Though it’s a little more spontaneous – and a lot less structured than I’m accustomed to – I think I liked it. Enough to do more!

I actually get quite a few requests for various artistic subjects, and some seem more doable than others. But this request was brought to me, ever so persistently, by a friend who just really appreciates the image of Our Lady with child. So here is my interpretation, hope you like!

BTW, don’t ask me if this is Irish Catholic Mary. Maybe it is.

Hail, Full of Grace…

The Annunciation, by Kim Vandapool

The Annunciation is a powerful concept. No need to unpack it, theologically, here – as much as I want to dissect and expound upon words like kecharitomene…I think I’ll leave all that important heavy lifting stuff to the pros. What is important is that the Blessed Virgin Mary did say yes to such an inconceivable (pun intended) proposal. What is hard to capture, artistically speaking however, in the face of Mary, is her pure fear, surprise, humility, and acceptance of that moment. Once again, I found myself intimidated and unable to move forward at multiple times in this piece as I started, stopped, and returned to it over a period of several years. But eventually I simply accepted it for what it had become (in all its evolution), and with a few finishing touches, called it finito yesterday.

So here is my ambivalent contribution to “The Annunciation” motif. With that, I think it’s only fitting to recall Our Lady’s words in the Magnificat:

My soul doth magnify the Lord. And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. Because he hath regarded the humility of his handmaid; for behold from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. Because he that is mighty, hath done great things to me; and holy is his name. And his mercy is from generation unto generations, to them that fear him. He hath shewed might in his arm: he hath scattered the proud in the conceit of their heart. He hath put down the mighty from their seat, and hath exalted the humble. He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away. He hath received Israel his servant, being mindful of his mercy: As he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his seed for ever.