Original Artwork & Custom Portraits

 20"x 24" acrylic on canvas                                    ©2017 Alexis Castillo

20"x 24" acrylic on canvas                                    ©2017 Alexis Castillo

Persistence & Provision

I loooooove symbolism. And whether intentional or not, the more you notice it, the more you see it.

So when I began notice bluejays all over the place, I started to count them. Not that this is some rare bird, mind you— but still. Noted.
Bluejays are big, beautiful, and often-annoying birds. They can be aggressive, quite common in the US, and a bit scary... if you're the one holding the hot dog they're got their eye on.
To say it in a word: They are determined.

Then I saw a picture of a badger— which is strange. (Not nearly as common —or pretty,— as bluejays.) But noteworthy, for sure!

I was wondering why on earth I would see in my mind a picture of a badger of all things. And then it struck me that there was a strange similarity between the two. Badgers, while they can be downright mean, are persistent, and this is exactly what I need to be.
While it is less that typical to consider a display of badgers on your library shelf, it was too fitting to pass up, hence this display of Persistence and Provision.
...Oh, what's with the carrots? That's the provision part. And for those of you who are into symbolism you should appreciate: if you count them, there are seven ;)

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 14"x 36" acrylic on canvas                            ©2017 Alexis Castillo

14"x 36" acrylic on canvas                            ©2017 Alexis Castillo

Overflow of the Heart

I don't know if this is"normal" or not, but I see pictures, before they're drawn out.

This doesn't always work perfectly and it is certainly not foolproof, but I can look at a canvas (most of the time) and see what belongs there.

And this one was one of those: I could see a picture of an overflow of life welling up from inside a person and bursting into flowers from her mouth.
A garden of delights. An expression of beauty that erupts from within and is enormous in comparison to the person that initially contained it.

If from the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks, I want my heart to be the seed of words that blossom.

That with my kids and with my husband my words become— not "flowery" but satisfyingly fragrant. That my expressions are a joy and a pleasure— a beautiful place of rest.

I often remember a house where I would go for weekly Sunday lunch for some time. It was a small and beautiful house, and a rather formal lunch, which always included starting with a salad course and piping hot coffee with dessert. We talked about politics, art, and philosophy— but none of those things are the things I remember most.
What I remember is the smell of the remnants of prayer when I stepped in the door.

That might sound crazy, but I am certain that's what I smelled there. I never saw them pray (apart from blessing the food), I never even heard them talk about it; but that place had such a settled otherworldly peace in it.
It was the home that smelled like God lived there, more than any church— and I've never forgotten it.

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