Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Anglo Saxon Colored Pencil Folk Art Bible-2nd Kings

Anglo Saxon Colored Pencil Folk Art Bible-2nd Kings
24" x 18" on Sketch Paper

Book 12 Poster 12

Two Nations Become None
Downfall of Israel
Downfall of Judah

Yes this picture is busy and strange. You just try to depict prophecies and miracles.:-) The book begins with the passing of King Ahaziah, the response of Elijah to being called to the Kings death bed, and Jehoram becoming King. Elijah and Elisha were traveling together in Elijah's old age and they came to Jordan where Elijah struck with his mantle, the water parted, and they crossed to the other side. Here Elijah asked what Elisha wanted before Elijah passed away. Elisha wanted to be doubly like Elijah. If it was to be granted there would be a sign. Elisha was to see Elijah taken up. When Elijah was taken up to heaven in a whirlwind not only did Elisha see it but Elijah's mantle fell from him to Elisha. Shown at the top left hand corner you can see Elijah in yellow, wearing the plaid mantle, and being taken up.  You also see the mantle being used to part the Jordan. Both men used it to do that.
Elisha did many wonders. He purified drinking water next. Also shown in that corner kneeling beside a man in blue and holding a pitcher. The next event shown is the bears after a young man that had been teasing Elijah about being a baldhead person. And here is where I made one of my artistic blunders. My Elijah seems to have hair. Oops. Possibly I was trying to figure out the significance of this event and forgot not to pencil in his hair. I really can't say for sure. Also I noted that it says two female bears came out and I seem to have three. Duh. One, two, three. Don't take my pictures too closely to heart.
Elisha prophesied the events regarding the Moab rebellion, and then saved a women from dept by multiplying her jars of oil to sell. You can see her and her son filling jars just above left center on the picture. He then went to Shunem where he met a woman and her husband that added on an extra bedroom for him to stay in during his travels. That is drawn on the left edge just above the stone wall. She has her hand on Elisha's back and showing him into the house. (I might add here that one of the reasons I chose to use folk art form to work with is because one person can be doing many different things in the same drawing. So even though Elisha is only one man he is shown several times.) Elisha granted because the woman was so kind to him that although she had not been able to have children that she would have a son. She did and he grew up but became ill to the point of death but Elisha prayed and lay himself on the boy and brought back his life to him and returned her son to her. I show this scene outside rather  than inside because I just couldn't figure out how to work it in. So in the center of the picture you see Elisha beside the child's bed beseeching God.
Next he cures some men from a poisonous stew. If you look right center you will see 3 men around a table and one is holding his throat. He went from there to cure a leper by having him wash in the Jordan. It wasn't the river that cured him it was the obedience. Shown just above the men and their stew. I also show the servant Gehazi taking what didn't belong to him from the cured leper as payment. You can see him with the lepers donkey. But Gehazi was keeping it for himself so Elisha then transferred the leprosy to Gehazi.
Elisha then goes on to float an ax head for a fellow that has dropped it in the river after borrowing it from someone. You can see the man and the falling ax head toward the top right of the picture. Why is Elisha doing all these individual miracles?
At this point I am beginning to think to myself "kits, cats, sacks, and wives", how many miracles is Elisha going to do on his way to St. Ives.(I hope you know that child's story)
Now he proceeds to save the king of Israel by warning him that the Syrians are coming along his path and the Syrians try to capture Elisha. God shows him he is surrounded and protected by an army of angels and also showed the king of Israel who protected them. He, the king of Israel, asked Elisha what should be done with the Syrian army and he told them to feed them bread and water and send them away. The table of bread is shown lower center beside the drawings of Elisha praying over the boy and below the men eating stew. The Syrians did not come again into the land of Israel.
Next we have the one story that sticks in my mind the most from this book. Two women agree to cannibalize their children because of a famine in the land. "We will eat my son today and yours tomorrow." They are drawn just below middle center of the picture as two scraggly women placing a skinny child into a boiling pot. The next day the second woman refused to cook hers and the first took her complaint to the king. Now cannibalizing your own child is bad enough but think of what the entire social, moral, spiritual, culture must have fallen into for a woman to feel free enough to go to her king and state such a complaint! The king then turned on Elisha?
Sorry this is so long but so much happened.
Next we have four lepers scaring off an entire army and looting their camp because the Lord had caused the Syrian army to hear sounds of chariots and a great army. The lepers are shown at the top right corner and the soldiers running away from their tents.
Now Elisha tells the healed son of the nice lady he met earlier to go live somewhere else because of a famine. They do it and return seven years later and their property is restored to them by the king. Elisha goes from there to Damascus and tells Hazael to lie to his king about getting well from an illness and then to become king in his place. Go figure that one out. Another King, King Hezekiah was granted 15 years more life after an illness and he wanted a sign to prove it was going to happen. The Lord brought the shadow on a stairway back ten steps. You can see the stairway close the middle right edge beside the warrior.
This leads to a long string of kings. Jehoram reigns in Judah, Ahaziah succeeds Jehoram in Judah. Jehu reigns over Israel. Jehoram is Assassinated. Jehu Assassinates Ahaziah. Jezebel is Slain. Judgment on Ahab's House. Jehoahaz Succeeds Jehu. Athaliah Queen of Judah. Joash reigns over Judah. Joash succeeded by Amaziah in Judah. Kings of Israel: Jehoahaz and Jehoash. Some good kings but mostly bad. The list goes on for several more chapters. The results of which are Israel collapses before Assyria and Judah before Babylon because they rejected God's covenant to take care of them if they obey him. At one point Hilkiah found the book of the law in the house of the Lord and when it was read to the king reforms were made for a time. I have shown many kings falling, some even killing their own sons, some killed by others, some killed by outsiders.
Now just before the time of death of Elisha Joash the king of Israel came to him for advice about a war and Elisha had him shoot and arrow of an East facing window and the strike the arrows on the ground to decide how badly he would defeat the Syrians. ??? Again I am confused. Then Elisha was buried, bands of Moabites  invaded, a man was cast into Elisha's grave because some men doing the funeral wanted to flee, and when they cast him into Elisha's grave the man came back to life and climbed out. Well I show some arrows and I show the man climbing out of the grave but I don't begin to tell you why.
At the bottom of the picture is the thrown of the king and the house of God destroyed. Jerusalem was burned and plundered and the people were carried away along with all the wealth of the land. Only the poorest of poor were left to be governed by Gedaliah who was later killed by the Chaldeans.

The hand at the bottom of the picture represents who you want it to be, the hand of God, the hand of Elisha, the hand of someone shaking their fist at God, the kings, the conquerors, the poor that became slaves, the lost, or whomever you feel fits.
Two nations have just become none.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Chicken Tractor

This is our new chicken tractor. Ladies you know your husband loves you when he builds you a chicken tractor or a mobile chicken coop. We can have up to three chickens in the city. No roosters because they have a tendency to crow at the street lights all night.  In the top photo you can see the adjustable tires. Just set them in place and lift the other end and move to a new location. The tires can be up for moving and stay in position with a long bolt through a hole or down so the pen sets flat on the ground. There are two small round wire covered vent holes. One is on either side. Plus there is the sliding open/shut wire covered vent/window. The ladder hoists up at night if you want by using the rope you see hanging down the side and the rope wraps around the small post sticking up. The end has a door for food and water placement. We added a clear plastic plant tray (99cents) over the feed jar to keep the rain out and it works really well. The bar across the top has hooks under it where the feed container is attached so when you lift the tractor to move to a new location it lifts the container too. I'm still working on something to lift the water. You can't poke a hole in the top to add a hook because it lets out the suction that keeps the water in the jug. I'm thinking maybe a macrame plant hanger. The girls deserve the best. An access door in the back opens to the nesting boxes, the roost bar and oops, the poop tray which is a screen covered box so the chickens don't walk in the mess and it can be easily removed for cleaning. As you can see we have two very nice Rhode Island  Red poults. We named them Laverne and Shirley after the comedy show. Hopefully they are going to help us with our wormy apples and pears by eating all those nasty critters. The coop is sitting in the lawn area for today because we haven't quite finished pruning. After they finish off all those bugs etc. then they get to work on scratching up the mossy patches in our lawn so we can regrow some grass there. They have lots of work to do and our lawn maintenance crew (our sons) never laid eggs while they worked.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Anglo Saxon Colored Pencil Folk Art Bible-1st Kings

Anglo Saxon Colored Pencil Folk Art Bible-1st Kings
18" x 24" On Sketch Paper

Book 11 Poster 11

One Nation Becomes Two
The King with a Divided Heart
The Divided Kingdom he Left Behind

There are lots of divisions that I see in this book.
1st Kings begins with the aged David and the attempt of Adonijah to exalt himself to the position of king instead of Solomon. Family divisions and divisions of power. Adonijah's grasp for the throne is thwarted and Solomon is placed as the King by David just prior to David's passing.
In this picture you see Solomon seated on the throne wearing both blue and red. You see in the top left corner David's funeral bier. In the top right corner you see Adonijah executed by Solomon's henchman Benaiah. He later also struck down Joab for earlier deaths he caused during David's reign and also Shimei for disobeying an order to save his life by not leaving his house.
After Solomon's Rule is firmly established he marries a daughter of the Pharaoh. Ah divisions. The Pharaoh and daughter are depicted standing at the center left. She is bowing her head.
Solomon prayed that he would have wisdom from God and God granted not only wisdom but riches and honor as well. He made many wise judgments from his throne. One of which was the two women fighting over who's child lived and who's child died and to which mother the living child belonged.  The two women and the child in a bassinet are seated on the steps below Solomon. The servant below them is bringing the sword to "divide" the child with, but the one stops it by saying give the child to the other women. Solomon then knows which mother the child belongs to and everyone that hears knows that Solomon has the wisdom of God and the ability to discern or divide between right and wrong being administered through him.
Solomon's wealth, wisdom and power increase and he makes an agreement with King Hiram for timber like none other to build the house for God that his father David wanted to build. To the sides in this picture you can see the gold covered walls, the winding stairs to the middle story, the inner holy place with the cherubs over the ark where it was placed when the construction was finished, and carvings and palm trees engraved, and all the glory of the house of the Lord. You can see the pillars and the great bath, the candle sticks, the gifts of apes and peacocks, the untold riches that his father collected were lavished into the temple. Solomon also built a palace for the Pharaoh's daughter that he married using the same workmanship and costly materials.
The house of the Lord was dedicated with a huge sacrifice and seven days of celebration and God told him as long as he walked according to God's word everything would be great and God would abide  with the people in the house that Solomon built with all the things he and David had acquired. Even Queen of Sheba came to see the greatness of Solomon's wisdom and prosperity and the splendor of the house of God.
However, Solomon loved too many women and those women worshiped other gods. If you look at the women milling around in the picture you will see many are carrying idols. God is upset and brings war against Solomon and tears the kingdom apart. When Solomon died he was looking at a divided kingdom shown by the blue kings on one side and red kings on the other towards the bottom of the picture. I also used them to show the many changes of succeeding kings.
Then along comes Elijah the prophet, he says there will be no rain until he says so and God tells him to hide. He is fed by ravens and gets water from a stream (provisions from God) until that dries up and then he lives with a widow woman and her son in a foreign city. The son becomes ill to the point of death and Elijah brings him back through prayer and laying himself on the boy. This foreign woman believes Elijah is a man of God.
Elijah also proves to the people God is the Lord and not Baal by a test of fire at an offering so he showed God to the Israelites and to the outsider or foreign woman. After God took up the offering in fire Elijah prayed seven times and the rains came. You can see the big drops of rain with one falling into one of his hands. I have decided to show Elijah with his hand on the child seen at the bottom of picture. Somehow that event seemed more important to me than the rain or the fire. Possibly because it was set apart and I didn't fully understand it. Why was the prophet to save one foreign child while Israel suffered drought and starvation. What did it have to do with all the upheavals and divisions of lands, and Gods, and idols, and all the different kings and wars that followed even after the fire consumed the offering and the rain returned.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Anglo Saxon Colored Pencil Folk Art Bible 2nd Samuel

Anglo Saxon Colored Pencil Folk Art Bible-2nd Samuel
18" x 24" On Sketch Paper

Book 10 Poster 10

David's Rise and David's Fall
Triumph, Transgression, and Trouble

In this poster in the top left corner you see the death of Saul falling on his sword and Jonathan falling in battle wearing his quiver. You see the runner coming to tell David. You see David as the new king, on his knees, holding a sword in one hand and his harp in the other. This figure will be used to represent David in other posters as well.
There is a group battle centered in the picture as there were many battles during David's reign to become king over not just part but all of Israel and even more afterward.
At the top of the picture you see Uzzah reaching out to steady the Ark as it began to topple from the cart it was being transported on just before God struck him dead for the act of touching it. This caused some fear and the ark was not brought to Jerusalem until much later when it was properly conveyed by the priests.
David triumphed in many wars and he remembered Saul and wanted to show kindness to Jonathan's lame son, pictured at David's right hand wearing red like his father and grandfather and walking with crutches coming to David's house to live.
In the bottom right corner of the picture you will see Bathsheba, whom David stole away from Uriah her husband by having him killed in battle. Bathsheba is washing and holding baby Solomon, their second child. The first child conceived while Uriah was away died by the hand of God. You see a small coffin for him across the bottom right hand corner. You also see Nathan at the bottom towards the left rebuking David for his sin concerning Bathsheba and Uriah.
Left center on the picture Amnon is taking his sister against her will. The figure in blue with the white trim around the bottom of his robes is representing Absalom's servant avenging his sister Tamar. Absalom fled out of fear for killing his brother, later formed a conspiracy against David so he could be king, and was also slain and cast into a deep pit. You can see the blue robe with the white trim, the same as Absalom's servant is wearing, on the figure just below his servant avenging Tamar.
Many more battles occur throughout the book of 2nd Samuel until the 23rd chapter where David's last song is recorded. This is why my David is holding both a sword and a harp.
The final chapter he displeased God by taking a census of his might, which brought a pestilence from God to remind David just who was in control. David built and altar and gave sacrifice, repented his actions before the Lord, and God held back on his punishment. You can see the altar drawn just behind David's raised harp.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Anglo Saxon Colored Pencil Folk Art Bible- 1st Samuel

Anglo Saxon Colored Pencil Folk Art Bible- 1st Samuel
18" X 24" on Sketch Paper

Book 9 Poster 9

Samuel, Saul
Leadership in Transition

Saul and David
Leadership in Exile

To me in this book there is a change from Judges to Prophets and Kings being the communications between God and man.
Samuel is depicted in the center wearing the yellow I assigned to the tribe of Ephraim in the drawing of Numbers and the banners. He is also wearing a "plaid" collar. I will use this collar in future pictures to denote a prophet.  The figure on the right side of the picture represents a Philistine. It could be Goliath or any of many Philistines that warred with Israel and took away the Ark of the Covenant at one point. The people wanted a king like all the others around them and Samuel was sent out by God to find the one he had chosen. From the tribe of Benjamin Saul was chosen. Thus he and his son Jonathan are shown here in the red color I used for their tribes banner. David is the "ruddy" or red haired freckled one in blue.
Saul fought many battles with many enemies but didn't fully obey God's commands. At one point Saul even takes on the duties of the priestly office and offers sacrifice depicted by the offering on the stone alter behind him. Samuel told Saul then that his kingdom would not endure.  God had Samuel anoint David to reign in his place of leadership even while Saul was still alive. That is why I show both Saul and David in this picture. Jonathan becomes David's dearest friend and even he recognizes that David will be the next king and offers to help save his life by sending him messages about his father hunting to kill him.  With three arrows sent from his bow Jonathan gives David the signal to flee for his life. There is a staff between Saul and David. It could be being held by either person.
At the top of the picture where the grass color changes from greens to yellows I attempted to show, as in a comic strip conversation bubble, the things Samuel saw. He saw the war with the Philistines, the capture of and eventual return of the ark, the process of searching for a king through the lost donkeys, the loaves of bread and jug of wine, and the prophets playing instruments that would all lead to the finding of Saul and the anointing him as the first king. If you look closely at the small figures in the top right portion of the picture you will see Samuel, in yellow, holding a small red vile of oil gathered with others anointing Saul king. At the bottom the larger figure of Samuel is holding a blue vile of oil for David. In the small figures at the top right Samuel is holding a crown over Saul's head. At the bottom he is holding it over David's.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Anglo Saxon Colored Pencil Folk Art Bible-Ruth

Anglo Saxon Colored Pencil Folk Art Bible - Ruth
18" x 24" on Sketch Paper

Book 8 Poster 8

Interlude of Love
Guidance of God

First of all I must apologize for this photo. There appears to be a reflection of the portrait of a man in the center of the paper. Each of these posters are covered with a plastic that reflects things in the room. I do believe that is a reflection of my husband standing there. Upon seeing this photo we both said, "wow, that must be Boaz". :-)
I may just lightly sketch it in when the poster comes home.

My husband also says there doesn't seem to be much in this picture. I intentionally put the figures of the three women in the foreground and lots of empty space between them and Bethlehem to represent both the fact that Naomi had travel to a foreign land but also to show the famine of her own land. You can see here too that they are empty handed.
Naomi's robes are the blue color I assigned to the tribe of Judah when I made the banners in Numbers. The daughter-in-laws are both a greenish color different from any banner color to show they are Moabites and not one of the tribes. Yes I know this is a bit much but you must remember these are my long winter projects and I am in no hurry with them.
At the top of the page centered between the hills you see the town of Bethlehem with women in Judah blue gleening in Boaz's green fields where Namoi and Ruth will find God's provision. You also see the servant of Boaz tending one of his flock and watching over Ruth near the threshing building where Ruth is redemed before her marriage to Boaz and the birth of a son that becomes part of the line of David. God has filled their lives.
When I had finished the picture my husband told me he thought Boaz should have been more prominently placed somewhere because without his obedience to the marriage and inheritance laws that no redemption would have taken place. I agreed Boaz did play a big part but the book after all was not named Boaz but was named Ruth. Although after seeing that reflection I my just sneak Boaz very lightly into the scene.