Sunday, June 28, 2015

Good News Post!

Saugatuck Journey of Light
22x30
Mixed Media
©Antonia Ruppert

This is a quick Good News Post!


I'm super thrilled as I write this. My proposed piece - "Saugatuck Journey of Light" has been accepted by the Arc Hotel which is being built in Muncie, IN. I am thankful to God for the opportunity and for my friend Bill who let me know about it.

Oli's Pets
12x12
Acrylic on Panel
©Antonia Ruppert
This piece came together this week to a great response.  This is what I was told, "OMGoodness...you are awesome...it is beautiful...I knew you would do an amazing job...God bless your hands woman!" 

Rough Patch
14x14
Acrylic on Paper
©Antonia Ruppert
This piece is something different for me. Very. I was surprised at the playfulness and freedom of it.  I put music on and my paints and this is what happened.

So thats it. Good news all around.  Thank you for joining me here!





Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Spending Daddy's Day Without Dad? - Some Inspiration

"Robert Lee James"
©Antonia Ruppert
Graphite on Paper
This is all still new to me. This spending Father's Day without my Dad.  I know my friends LaTanya, Laura and Bruce can relate....

Perhaps this is the path for you too this Father's Day.  In any case, I want to invite you into this moment with me--this inspirational/celebratory moment.

Remembering the Inspiration
First, I recall as a young girl watching Daddy come home from a hard days work and draw.  I was delighted by what he would create with just a pencil, paper and eraser. I thought to myself that one day, I’d like to draw like that too.

Remembering the Celebration
Second, I remember how over the years, I utilized Daddy or the feelings about him for creations.



"Real Men Read" - Markham Public Library, Markham, Illinois
Latex and Acrylic Paint on Wood 
(Bench Constructed by Ursich Construction)
"Daddy Daughter Day"
©Antonia Ruppert
Watercolor
"For Lauren"
© Antonia Ruppert
Watercolor
18x24

For the "Real Men Read" bench for the Markham Public Library in Markham, IL, I utilized photos of my Dad for the figure on the right. Additionally, this painting, "Daddy Daughter Day" shown below shares a closeness I experienced with my Dad growing up.


After completing the painting above, I received these words on my Facebook page:

My name is Lauren... and my mom is Mia...I wanted to thank you for the BEAUTIFUL painting of me and my dad. It was so special. I couldn't have dreamed a better birthday gift...It's brought me to tears a few times already and I've only had it a few hours.

I lost my dad at 3 so that didn't give us much time for pictures together so my collection is limited. But now I get to look at us together everyday. There's no words to describe what that means to me. Thank you for your time and work. I cannot wait to display it in my home forever! Thank you from the bottom of my heart!

Can you believe that the impetus for this started when I was a little girl watching my Dad draw?

Over the years, Daddy seemed interested in my work and what new project I was working on. His last words to me were “Toni, keep doing what you are doing.” Since I did not know they were the last words, I cherish them all the more.


I celebrate these moments...

What moments do you have to celebrate?
How might you express them today?

I will leave you with this song and a concluding encouragement. 


No matter if this past Mother's Day, this upcoming Father's Day or the next birthday is challenging, I encourage you to create for your loved one. Make a song, a rap, a dish, a painting, a poem, a journal entry...

Feel free to let me know how it goes in the comments below.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

New Art + Persevering

Jennifer Strong
16x20
Acrylic and Mixed Media
©Antonia Ruppert

This painting was started some time ago. However, I was not able to finish it. Do you have projects like that?

I finished this piece by working on it about an hour at a time.  Each session brought me closer to my goal:  to show her perseverance and faith.

Determined, indomitable, tough, tenacious and faithful- these all describe Jennifer Strong. Created with many special items including acrylic, cloth and oil pastels, this piece is a reminder that you can do all things through Him who gives you strength.

$445 + s/h




Prints of this art work available on Fine Art America



Sunday, May 10, 2015

For Moms Whose Life May Not Be a Fantasy


"Julia - Standing Strong"
12x12
©Antonia Ruppert
Mixed Media Acrylic and Oil Pastel on Panel
Do you remember what two shows were on Saturday night TV in the 80’s? I won’t make you strain to remember.  They were Love Boat and Fantasy Island.  I bring them up to remind you of the endings—always perfect and wrapped up in an hour.  Though in real life, circumstances are not always a dream, I’m learning from other moms that one does not have to wait to be faithful. 

Don’t Wait to Believe
When I talked with Dee, she shared how she came to trust God with her children.  She recalls being anxious when her first daughter went away to college.  She says she cried - she was so scared.  At some point, she was assured by scripture when Jesus says he had not lost one(John 18:9).  She always goes back to that key verse.

Additionally, when her second daughter’s right side went limp while running track, she knew something was wrong.  She could not get in to see a specialist for her daughter for 6 months.  She remembers thinking, “Really Lord?’  The scripture that encouraged her was John 11:4 (But when Jesus heard it he said, “This illness does not lead to death…”  Her daughter’s condition was eventually diagnosed and managed. 

 “God is amazing,” Dee says. He carried her through.

Don’t Wait to Worship
While getting to know Julia, it became apparent that she is a true worshipper. If you only knew her story, you'd understand her exuberant praise.

After suffering a stroke in 1995, she promised she would be a better mother.  Having a stroke brought her family closer to her.  God brought her through the slow journey.  That is why she praises God so much.


"Tina (Attentive and Faithful)"
©Antonia Ruppert
12x12
Mixed Media Acrylic and Oil Pastel on Panel
Don’t Wait to Laugh
As I painted Zoraida we could not help laughing and talking. 

Zoraida shared with me the funniest story about her children.  They were about  six and three at the time.  One day , some friends of her mother showed up to visit her. In her excitement, she forgot to offer them anything-no water, cookies or anything. This was something she often did when friends stopped by.  

After talking for a bit, her small children appeared with the tray. They had placed  real glasses and everything on it.  They walked in with juice spilling between the two of them. The three year old asked, “Do you want juice?” in Spanish.  But she said it wrong since she was just learning , both English and Spanish.

Zoraida smiled and laughed as she recalled this memory.

"Hannah Remembering" - progress
©Antonia Ruppert
12x12
Mixed Media Acrylic and Oil Pastel on Panel
Don't Wait to Remember
The funny stories continued when I talked to Hannah.

She recalled a day when her husband was home with their two year old, Marcus. When she returned home, Marcus came downstairs with a substance on his face and arms.  Hannah thought it was poop all over him and started freaking out.  She did what every mom would do. She smelled it, etc., but there was no scent.  She went upstairs and found what he’d gotten into.  what she saw made her laugh.  He  had found a stash of cheetos and coffee(was it ground?).  He had dipped the cheetos into the coffee and ate some and smeared some. 

It’s one of those stories you remember with laughter.

Thanks to all of the mothers who have shared their stories with me.  I am headed today to my church New Life Community Church to worship.  As part of the service for Mother's Day, folks will be able to see twelve paintings from my series.  Here is a sneek peek at the installation: 


Portraits of Motherhood
 Installation view at New Life Community Church (Melrose Park, IL)
©Antonia Ruppert
Portraits of Motherhood 
 Installation view at New Life Community Church (Melrose Park, IL)
©Antonia Ruppert
In conclusion, I am learning so much from my painting series.  No matter what mountain you are facing, no matter what battles you’re fighting - you don’t have to wait.  No, this is not the Love Boat or Fantasy Island.  But, what I’m learning from other moms is that one does not have to wait to be faithful. You can believe, worship, laugh and remember.  Now.

Who do you know who'd love to see this post? Thank you for using the share buttons to post on Facebook, Google + or where ever you hang out.

Happy Mother’s Day.


Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Faces of Strength - a Mom with a Global Heart

"Lori's Heart"
Mixed Media on Panel
12x12
In my last post, I shared about Lori.   This post, I hope to inspire you with her strength story.

For Lori, it all started at a church youth group about four years ago.  The topic was about an organization called “Feed My Starving Children.” a non-profit committed to feeding malnourished children.  She thought it would be a good way for her own children to be involved - “kids helping kids.”  

About two years later, after Lori became the president of her parent/teacher association she was given a huge task.  The superintendent suggested they come up with a community service project for the middle schoolers.  The idea to do something with “Feed My Starving Children” kept coming back to her. 

The idea was sealed when she saw they had a mobile packing day event which allows groups to pack meals at their own location.  She says she felt it was a way for the students to be “globally connected.” It was a chance to “reach beyond our borders.”

It took a big step of faith and a ton of letters, followup and fundraising. As a result of her step and that of many other community members, there were: 
  • 108,000 mobile packs
  • 510 volunteers
  • 3 different packing sessions
  • 14 pallets of food

298 children fed for one year!

Lori says she learned “not to limit God with what my idea of possible is. All things are possible.”
Can I hear an amen?

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Faces of Strength - What Do You Have a Heart for?

"Lori - in Progress"
Oil Pastel and Acrylic
12 x12
Have you ever met someone who is so purposeful about her calling?  

That is my friend Lori - another strong subject in my Faces of Strength series. 

Besides being a wife and a mother of two teens, Lori has a real heart for children.  She had always wanted her own children after holding babies in her church nursery.  

After starting her family later in life, she believes family to be the most important foundation.  As her children are now older, she says its important to develop relationships with them as they mature.

So what happens when this determined wife, mom and PTA president decides to help starving children and make a global impact?  

I will share the details of Lori’s mission in my next post.

Meanwhile, what do you have a heart for? What mission would you be willing to exert great strength for?
I can’t wait to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Keep Your Head Up

drawing, affirmation, faith
"Keep Your Head Up - design sketch"
©Antonia Ruppert
Ink and Watercolor on Paper
6.5x11
Keep your head up. You can do it. Stay Positive. It will work out.

Today marks the first day in this new month. Its a day for pranks according to my daughter but, I think its a day for new beginnings.

So encourage yourself.

I submitted this design idea to a new training center that is looking for art.  I loved the message and thought you would also appreciate the positive vibe.

I dedicate this creation to my godson BJ and my dear friend Anita.

Keep your head up.