Friday, September 21, 2012


Today I thought I would share with you why I paint mainly birds.To me birds are a symbol of freedom and joy. After being in a suppressive church for two years I have known the stifling cage of conformity and loneliness. God has given me a newfound understanding of what true freedom is. In my works I try to portray the vibrancy of seeking his freedom, and the beauty of His creation. With this I generally do not paint eyes on the birds because I think of that as the place you can see the breath of life in something. I want to leave that for the Almighty, and this is a way that I like to show my humanity.

© 2012
The work to the right is one of my favorite works and I don't think that I could ever sell the original. It is just too close to my heart. I started painting this when I was in the process of leaving the church. I was in such turmoil over leaving, knowing that I would lose all of my closest friends if I chose to leave. I was fighting hard against what I felt God calling me to. I began by paining the blues and yellows rubbing hard against the canvas. As I rubbed some of the paint rubbed off creating a beautiful landscape.  Next I painted the red which symbolizes the pain and tears of that time. After this I waited several months before I felt God calling me back to this work and what He wanted me to paint. Then it came once I found some peace in where he was calling me. I painted the dove symbolizing the Holy Spirit and His presence with me through it all, and the same hope that was given to Noah all those years after the storm. I know it might be hard to see in this photo but I used gold paint around the dove that is over top of the red paint showing its power over the storm.

" I will say to the prisioners, 'Come out in freedom,' and to those in darkness, 'Come into the light.' they will be sheep, grazing in green pastures and on hills that were previously bare."
Isaiah 49:9 NLT

I would love it if you would be willing to share how God has called you into living in freedom and something that you keep to remind you of that freedom.


  1. Carliann, this is truly a beautiful painting with a beautiful story! Your blog is off to a great start. I love the idea of having something that I keep to remind me of the freedom that God called me toward. For me it was away from Christianity altogether, and was a path I started on a long time ago! Maybe I will restring a rosary from my childhood for some new prayers. Good luck on your last semester, and I hope you have time to "worship through art." I really really really love that phrase. xo stephanie

  2. I loooove this painting and the story behind it too! You've told me before, but I loved reading about it again. Being FREE was like the theme of my summer! Galatians 5:13. I will blog about it SOON on my blog! :D

  3. Carliann, this one is so beautiful. And I remember it now. Your work is inspiring and deep. I love knowing the stories and that this one is dear to your heart. <3 Jenni