In a recent workshop where I shared my approach to speed painting, I was asked how much time was usually given to me to plan out my designs. I said sometimes a couple of weeks, but I prefer about a month's time for planning. Well, compared to that, my latest design was done at break-neck speed. My minister came to me with an idea on Tuesday saying, "I know this is last minute, but ...", and he shared his idea of doing something as a memorial for 9/11. So I agreed to try to come up with something, and we traded ideas back and forth a few times. On Thursday we agreed to the final design that would be used for the Sunday morning sermon painting.
For our Sunday morning church service, I painted during some of the songs, a video, and the sermon. I finished at the end of the sermon, just at the right time.
I had two basic ideas for the painting. The first was using images of the Twin Towers, and the Pentagon and surrounding them with visual symbolism. Examples of symbols were an olive branch for peace and restoration, a dove for peace, grace, and God's spiritual presence, and a child for innocence and hope for the future.
The second idea for the painting was to make it more of a collaborative effort with my audience. Though I would have preferred limiting input to just the church members, the time constraint left me to resort to other methods of getting help. So I used Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, and EDM Yahoo Group and asked the question, "What does FAITH, HOPE and LOVE mean to you in the context of remembering the events of 9/11?" Though I didn't get as big a response as I wanted, it was actually more than enough to where I had to condense and paraphrase the thoughts that were expressed. Since I have lately been using text in my personal art work, I had the idea of writing out the thoughts of those who shared in the painting design. I really wanted this piece to be more than just my response to 9/11 and allow it to be an open forum of sorts. Unfortunately, due to time and space limits, I was unable to share all of the shared thoughts on canvas.
Here are some details of the painting and also the final design.
Created with latex and acrylic paint on 6 feet by 4 feet canvas.