Daddy's Christmas Angel

Friday, May 13, 2016

Reflections on The A to Z Blog Challenge 2016 #atozchallenge

This year I decided to create a Heart a day for the A to Z Blog Challenge. This was a fun project, and I am very happy with the painting that I finished during April.

My "So Many Hearts Dancing in the Air" will soon be on display at Crossroads Art Center in Richmond, Virginia. This painting shows visually the significance of the words we use and upon which we reflect. My painting starts with an Aching Heart, continues on with Broken, Cheating, Dramatic, Fragile, Reckless, Shattered, and more all the way through the alphabet. Most of the hearts represent an emotion.

As a romance author, I wanted to choose words that reflected the emotions I might use when writing a story or a book. Some of the letters did not have a word that worked for a heart, so, in those cases, I sometimes chose a color, like "U" is for Ultramarine Blue and "Y" is for Yellow. Since yellow is a favorite color of mine and represents sunshine, I didn't think until later how Yellow could also represent the heart of a coward. In my painting, the Yellow Heart is that of a bright and cheerful person.

To the right, I show some of the pages from the sketchbook I used as I planned my painting. Each day I posted in my blog the new acrylic heart I created on the canvas. The quick drawings from the sketchbook are done with pencil and soft pastel sticks. They gave me an idea of what I wanted to paint on the canvas, but often the ideas changed when my brush touched down and started to spread the delicious wet paint. The color took over.

That's similar to what happens sometimes when I write a book.The characters take over and do something completely unplanned.

I believe my finished painting demonstrates the importance of the words we choose as we write and as we speak. Here is "So Many Hearts Dancing in the Air" as produced during the A to Z Blog Challenge in April.
"So Many Hearts Dancing in the Air" acrylic/mixed media on canvas ©Mary Montague Sikes


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

And it turned out really well!

Valerie Storey said...

Beautiful conclusion! I'm glad I got to follow your progress throughout the month. Very inspiring and I'm looking forward to reading more of your posts.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Well done Monti - it was a lovely idea .. and yes I can see the emotions being used as expressions in your hearts ... it'll be so fascinating to see what your visitors say ...

Yellow is bright and sunny ... cheers Hilary

Stephanie Faris said...

Ah yes...when the art takes us over, that's where the true creativity comes in. I loved your hearts! They were a bright spot in a stressful month.

Mary Montague Sikes said...

Thank you, Alex.

Thanks for visiting, Valerie. I enjoy illustrating my writing with photos and paintings.

Hilary, I haven't been back to my gallery space to see about comments. Hope I get some!

Stephanie, sorry your month was stressful. Thank you!

Birgit said...

I thought for sure I wrote here. Anyhoo...I love how you placed all the hearts everywhere to make your canvas complete. It all works cohesively and it is a great piece of art