Anyone who has taken one of my classes will tell you how attached I am to this story. For those who haven't taken a class, here's a glimpse into my journey.
When I was in elementary school, we took a field trip to the Detroit Institute of Arts. I was in awe as to the details in skin, the colors of fruit, and the depth of painted architecture. What amazing talent! I even appreciated Picasso and his unique view of the world. But after walking through enormous, canvas covered walls, we turn a corner and there was a pile of large, dried, stuck together, paint brushes on the floor. The kind you paint the outside of a house with. I assumed there was some reconstruction going on and that they had yet to clean up, but years later, when I returned, they were still there. Art. A pile of dried paint brushes. Huh! Each time I returned I fell deeper into this piece. What was the artist trying to convey? Layers of life? Change? The colors of our journey? How many things come together to make one whole?
The truth is I will never know what the artist was saying, and therein lies the beauty of art. An expression of the soul that is so individual, yet so relatable to the masses. I love how God designed us each to see beauty differently. What you think is beautiful, I may not, but once you allow me to see it through your eyes I get a different appreciation for it. We were created to create by the greatest artist who ever existed. He designed us with the ability to create peace, create children, create music and dance and paintings. We are all artists, as we are made in His image.
Open your soul. Art is everything and everywhere. From the design of an aphid or auto, to the stunning, never exactly the same twice, sunset, art surrounds you every single minute. Your fingerprints, your garden, your home, your eyes, your thoughts, your words, your world...all art.
There are many official definitions of art, but I find this one most fitting: "the quality, production, expression, or realm, according to aesthetic principles, of what is beautiful, appealing, or of more than ordinary significance." The beauty of every object and every person is not a realm of ordinary significance. Process that for a moment. Slow down. Take time. Absorb the extraordinary beauty that surrounds you, and see what a spectacular masterpiece He has painted just for you. Or at minimum, stop and smell some roses.