Watercolored Worship

I mentioned practicing with watercolors for an outdoor worship event we were gonna’ put on. That happened on Thursday night. And despite some unseasonable cold weather (for Houston, I mean… it never dips below 75 here), it was a great experience.

The concert was divided up into four thematic sections of 2-3 songs apiece, each based on a line from an old hymn called “Spirit Of The Living God.” They were:

Break Me

Mold Me

Fill Me

and Use Me.

As the worship leaders sang, I and my colleague, Judith Dollar, took turns quickly sketching out concepts and images from each song on matboard, then quickly dashing watercolors on before the set ended. It was a challenge, and you can see the speediness in each of the drawings I’m about to post here… but there’s also a fluidity to it that nicely captures the feel of worshiping together, huddled in blankets on a beautiful November evening.

First, my stuff:

This is from the Break Me set, with songs including “Come Thou Fount,” “Word of God Speak,” and “Restless.” I tried to put in our Creative Arts pastor and our mandolin player, along with some outright ventrical symbolism. I muffed a Hebrew symbol though. Anyone find it?

Judith was up next. Here’s her work from Mold Me. The first depicted “Like A Child” (by Jars of Clay) and “Beautiful Things (by Gungor)…

…and this depicted “Waiting Here For You” (by Christy Nockels… I think.)

You can see that Judith’s got this watercolor thing down. She used these special crayons to fill in space quickly, then went back over them with a giant wet brush to spread out the tones. I tried to emulate that on the The Fill Me set.

Songs here included “Captivate Us”… and I forget the other. I DID try to weave in elements from Jon Foreman’s “Baptize My Mind,” though.

Finally, Judith stepped back in with a bold piece for the Use Me set.

This exclusively concerned “Take My Life (And Let It Be)” which Chris Tomlin made popular a few years back. Note the strong color surrounding the guy on the right, with the heart exposed prominently in the middle. Almost like an aura’s coming off of him. Very cool.

Using watercolors is a fun, messy process, and if you keep at it, you can get some beautiful results (there’s a metaphor in there somewhere). If this stuff piques your interest, Judith also participates in a group that does live drawing/watercoloring on a regular basis. They’re called Urban Sketchers and they’re very cool. They also have a Texas-only branch, which you can check out here.

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Filed under Church, Sketchbook

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