For My Dad – A gift from the heart
Over the years I made many items for my dad from a wooden/glass inlaid gun case, gun racks, hand tooled leather belts, wallets, holsters, a shotgun and rifle case with hunting scenes of him hunting rabbit on one side and deer on the other. He loved all these gifts but there came a time he wanted something special from me. Growing up around my dad, not once did he ever go to church, at least not while I lived with him or was around him daily. Now this did not mean that he did not believe in God or was a Christian. He just felt that nature was God’s church and I know he prayed a lot.
My dad was Native, and he also observed or looked at everything as a Native would. My dad said he would love for me to create something “Christian” for him. Now knowing my dad as I did – and no he wasn’t perfect. He had made a lot of mistakes as we all have – I knew that our Creator had surely watched over him. He had survived so many hard times and still was able to laugh and cut up every day. Playing tricks or jokes on his family or friends was just Dad being Dad. You never knew when it was coming either. Dad never wanted to be rich like most folks, he just wanted enough to live. He loved animals and he loved teaching kids sports.
So taking all I knew about him and his ways, I started searching in the bible for a scripture that would speak to me about painting it. A picture of the painting, The Good Shepherd, spoke to me and I knew it would fit my dad. Each and every section of the painting has meanings, and as an artist I wanted to create my version so that each person must look at it to find what hidden messages it has so that each time you look at it you will find more that you did not see the first time. Or the second.
Why? Well because we all need help more than one time in our life. We need to be watched over all the time and no, we aren’t the first and no we aren’t the last. In this painting Jesus is done with the clouds encircling his body as he looks over the flock in the valley. I could say what is hidden but that would take away the purpose of the individual truly searching for the different subliminal messages in the painting. The colors also represent many things. So when you look, look again and again. The more you look the more you will find.
My dad loved this painting so much he had it hung over his bed for the rest of his life. It comforted him in his times of need as it was intended to do. To each person the painting should spark different thoughts and different feelings. That is its purpose because we all are different and that is what makes us all so special.
Hope you enjoy the story and seeking what you can find in the painting.