Friday, December 31, 2010

Tenrikyo- pencil in sketchbook- photoshopped

Tenrikyo ( Tenrikyō) is a monotheistic religion originating in alleged revelations to a 19th-century Japanese woman named Nakayama Miki, known as Oyasama by followers. Followers of Tenrikyo believe that God, known by several names including Tenri-O-no-Mikoto, expressed divine will through Nakayama's role as the Shrine of God, and to a lesser extent the roles of the Honseki Izo Iburi and other leaders. Tenrikyo's worldly aim is to teach and promote the Joyous Life, which is cultivated through acts of charity and mindfulness called hinokishin.
The primary operations of Tenrikyo today include 16,833 locally managed churches in Japan], the Jiba in Tenri City, the oyasato-yakata, and many other community-focused organizations. It has 1.75 million followers in Japan, and is estimated to have over 2 million worldwide. Tenrikyo is classified asshinshūkyō (new religious movement) in popular literature because it was founded in the 19th century. Tenrikyo is the largest current religion to have a female foundress.
read more about this one here....

I only have 4 religions left . WIll continue NEXT YEAR!
Happy New Year to all!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

painting my glass off

my set up

my acrylic start of a painting... 

This months Girl Just Wanna Paint challenge is glass.
These are just warm ups. Im not sure if I will go straightforward or do something more imaginative.
Im thinking of the latter, this is fun but I'm feeling ho-hum, so what, its glass with colorful water.
I want to make a picture- a story starring glass.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Pumpkin truck,acrylic on canvas, 11"x14", and SNOWDAY!!!!

This was a commission for a dear friend who gifted this to her mom yesterday.They had seen a similar version at a show I had about 10 years ago. I recreated the same sort of thing, but used a photo of my friend Karen Biagini's truck and made up the pumpkins.
It was a challenge to paint a fall scene in winter but I really had a blast painting it and I was glad to hear that she loved it.
Oh- and BTW- the penguins( actually from the SOUTH pole I find out!) are  a photoshop trick! I do have three that are really there (painted on  plywood) and my brother also has a set in his yard. Someday I hope to have enough to make my yard look like that!

I was scheduled to work today- at the museum, and go out later.
Mother nature had a different plan for us today , and although I'm VERY sad not to see my cousin Julie who is visiting from Asheville, NC ):, I was happy to stay in and paint. I am painting"glass" today for my challenge group.
Its really REALLY hard to paint glass!
It was my favorite kind of painting day today.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

I hope everyone had a fun day- it was very relaxing for us- we stayed home.

When we woke up there was a family of penguins on our front lawn.

My brother reported the same thing at his house down the street!

After dinner we took a walk and look what was on our lawn!
We've been visited by the North Pole!

Merry Christmas!

This is from two weeks ago at the First Parish Norwell Unitarian, the church I grew up in. I have permission from the minister to draw in Church.(:

I copied this from last nights candlelight service program at the same church.
We chose the early service- love the little kids and babies.
Silent Night sung by candlelight always brings me to tears.

And my painting of the Nativity.
I hope you all have a wonderful day with love all around you.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Kate's Last Piece

My friend Kate died yesterday after a year long fight against a brain tumor.
 Her wonderful family was huge and she was right in the middle.
She was a tireless worker, had three jobs, and raised three sons. Her  husband and family and friends rallied around her right up to the end. My heart goes out to all of them. Kate will be missed so much.This is her last piece, done with her left hand as her right side was not able to move.
It looks so hopeful to me- tree of life burning bright.

I put aside my religious study for today but somehow my rendition of Kate ended up looking like the Madonna ( not really like her!)
She was a wonderful mother. She made beautiful pottery (in the painting the 7 bowls represent her siblings- the three hands - her sons, her ring- her husband Scott, her beloved pets, her home and her garden, the sketch pad, her pastels.
We love you Kate. You are around us still by the beauty you gave to us.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Christmas Delivery!

My friend Ann Farrell waited OVER A YEAR for me to do this painting of her garden.
Ann is the most patient person ever! I had fun doing this and was SO happy to deliver it to her house in the snow today- I felt like an elf! She was surprised...
Here she is with her painting- I love how her outfit matches!
Merry Christmas Ann!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Zoroastrianism, sketchbook page

Zoroastrianism is a religion and philosophy based on the teachings of prophet Zoroaster (also known as Zarathustra, in Avestan) and was formerly among the world's largest religions. It was probably founded some time before the 6th century BCE in Persia (Iran). The term Zoroastrianism is, in general usage, essentially synonymous with Mazdaism (the worship of Ahura Mazda, exalted by Zoroaster as the supreme divine authority).
In Zoroastrianism, the Creator Ahura Mazda is all good, and no evil originates from Him. Thus, in Zoroastrianism good and evil have distinct sources, with evil (druj) trying to destroy the creation of Mazda (asha), and good trying to sustain it. Mazda is not immanent in the world, and His creation is represented by the Amesha Spentas and the host of other Yazatas, through whom the works of God are evident to humanity, and through whom worship of Mazda is ultimately directed. The most important texts of the religion are those of the Avesta, of which a significant portion has been lost, and mostly only theliturgies of which have survived. The lost portions are known of only through references and brief quotations in the later works, primarily from the 9th to 11th centuries.
thank you Wikipedia 

Monday, December 20, 2010

Cao Dai, watercolor on paper (an edited view of an altar)

Cao Đài Chữ Nôm: 道高台) is a syncretisticmonotheistic religion, officially established in the city of Tây Ninh, southern Vietnam, in 1926. Concerning the term Cao Đài, literally, Cao means "high" and Đài means "dais, as in a platform raised above the surrounding level to give prominence to the person on it." 
Adherents engage in ethical practices such as prayerveneration of ancestorsnonviolence, and vegetarianism with the minimum goal of rejoining God the Father in Heaven and the ultimate goal of freedom from the cycle of birth and death. Estimates of the number of Cao Đài adherents in Vietnam vary, but most sources give 2 to 3 million, with some estimates as high as 8 million. An additional 30,000 (numbers may vary), primarily ethnic Vietnamese, live in the United StatesEurope, and Australia.

According to Cao Dai, before God existed, there was the Tao, the nameless, formless, unchanging, eternal source referenced in the Tao Te Ching. Then a Big Bang occurred, out of which God was born (emanationism). The universe could not yet be formed and to do so, God created yin and yang. He took control of yang and shed a part of himself, creating the Goddess to preside over yin. In the presence of yin and yang, the universe was materialized. The Goddess is, literally, the mother of the myriad of things in the Universe. Thus, Caodaiists worship not only God the father, but also the Holy Mother, literally referred to as the Mother Buddha.

Saturday, December 18, 2010


Imagine the above star (pentagram/pentacle) surrounded by this series of words:

Wiccan Rede
Power Through Knowledge
Law of Attraction and imagine that
exists in the center of your star.

I did this wiccan star for a dear friend who requested it.
Wicca  is a Neopagan religion and a form of modern witchcraft. Often referred to as Witchcraft or the Craft, its adherents are commonly referred to as Wiccans, or as Witches or Crafters. Developing in England in the first half of the twentieth century,  Wicca was popularised in the 1950s and early 1960s by a Wiccan High Priest named Gerald Gardner, who at the time called it the "witch cult" and "witchcraft", and its adherents "the Wica".From the 1960s onward the name of the religion was normalised to "Wicca".

Friday, December 17, 2010

Shinto-watercolor on sketchbook page

Brief history of Shinto:

Shinto is an ancient Japanese religion. Starting about 500 BCE (or earlier) it was originally "an amorphous mix of nature worship, fertility cults, divination techniques, hero worship, and shamanism."  Its name was derived from the Chinese words "shin tao" ("The Way of the Kami") in the 8th Century CE. At that time:
bulletThe Yamato dynasty consolidated its rule over most of Japan.
bulletDivine origins were ascribed to the imperial family.
bulletShinto established itself as an official religion of Japan, along with Buddhism.
The complete separation of Japanese religion from politics did not occur until just after World War II. The Emperor was forced by the American army to renounce his divinity at that time.
Unlike most other religions, Shinto has no real founder, no written scriptures, no body of religious law, and only a very loosely-organized priesthood.

There is a tiny Shinto shrine in back of the Art Complex Museum.
It was donated by the MFA and sits by the pond.  

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Jainism, sketchbook collage and mixed media

Jainism ,  is an Indian religion that prescribes a path of non-violence towards all living beings.


Jainism is a religion and a way of life.

For thousands of years, Jains have been  practicing vegetarianism, yoga, meditation and environmentalism. Jains believe in the existence of eternal and divine SOUL in each living being.

Jain Way Of Life respects and honors these souls through:
  • Non Violence
  • Non Possessiveness
  • Non Absolutism

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Bahai Temple- altered book

According to the site I am using for this blog, the Baha'i religion comes after Judaism. I had not heard of it- here is more about it.

Since it also forms a single community, free of schism or factions, the Bahá’í Faith comprises what is very likely the most diverse and widespread organized body of people on earth.

Founded a century and a half ago, the Bahá’í Faith is today among the fastest-growing of the world’s religions. With more than five million followers, who reside in virtually every nation on earth, it is the second-most widespread faith, surpassing every religion but Christianity in its geographic reach. Bahá’ís reside in more than 100,000 localities around the world, an expansion that reflects their dedication to the ideal of world citizenship.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Kate Painting,oil over acrylic- 8"x10"

I finished this one from the summer and it was purchased yesterday by the girls parents.
I will continue with the religions but with all the holiday prep I am a bit behind!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Menorah, watercolor on paper

Judaism: Estimates of the world's Jewish population range from about 12 million to over 17 million. On the high end of realistic estimates of how many people would consider themselves Jews seems to be about 15 million, but a figure this high would include a large number of non-practicing, purely ethnic Jews. Judaism is far more important in areas such as history, literature, science, politics, and religion, than its relatively small numbers might suggest. The American Jewish Year Book published in 2000 by the American Jewish Committee, reports there are currently 5.7 million Jews in the United States, 362,000 in Canada, and 13,191,500 worldwide. More.

For a short time after graduating from The Museum School in Boston ( 1982), I lived with a Jewish family in Seattle.
I  especially enjoyed being there on the Sabbath, and the ritual of getting all the chores done and food prepared before the sunset on Fridays was very enlightening to me. It was peaceful and restful. Saturdays were quiet. Regular activities resumed on Sunday.
Growing up with Sundays being the day that things were closed was nice, although I didn't think so at the time.
I got this image of a menorah from , and painted it in watercolors.

Saturday, December 11, 2010


Spiritism: According to the 1997 Encyclopedia Britannica Book of the Year, there were 10,292,500 adherents of "Spiritism" in the world. But a recent census from Brazil indicates 15 million professed spiritists (practitioners of Umbanda, for instance), as well as a fringe following (not officially professed, but possibly quite avid) of up to 50 million. The boundaries between Spiritism and other categories, especially Christianity (especially Catholic and Baptist), Yoruba religion and primal-indigenous religions, can be quite uncertain. 
The fundamental principles of Spiritism, enunciated by Allan Kardec in his seminal work The Spirits Book, are: (i) A belief in the existence of spirits - non-physical beings that live in the invisible or spirit world - and (ii) the possibility of communication between these spirits and living people through mediumship. There is a clear difference, according to Kardec, between the terms "Spiritism" and "Spiritualism"; the latter is the "opposite of materialism", a belief that "there is something...more than matter" but it does not necessarily follow that a spiritualist "believes in the existence of spirits, or in their communication with the visible world."[4]

This little abstract was done late last night- I had been into some spirits of my own...(:

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Kim-Il- Sung, watercolor on paper

The next religion ranked by size is Juche.

Juche is the only government-authorized ideology in North Korea, to the point of excluding all other religions. "Juche" means "self-reliance" in the Korean language. Some writers cited in the database (under "Juche" as well as "Kimilsungism") classify Juche as a North Korean form of Marxist Communism. Juche began in the 1950s and is the official philosophy promulgated by the North Korean government and educational system. Its promoters describe Juche as simply a secular, ethical philosophy and not a religion. But, from a sociological viewpoint Juche is clearly a religion, and in many ways is even more overtly religious than Soviet-era Communism or Chinese Maoism.

Kim Il-sung (15 April 1912 – 8 July 1994) was a Korean communist, and later Juche, politician who led North Korea from its founding in 1948 until his death in 1994.[2] He held the posts of Prime Minister from 1948 to 1972 and President from 1972 to his death. He was also the General Secretaryof the Workers Party of Korea.
During his tenure as leader of North Korea, he ruled the nation with autocratic power and established an all-pervasive cult of personality. From the mid-1960s, he promoted his self-developed Juchevariant of communist national organisation.[3] Following his death in 1994, he was succeeded by his son Kim Jong-il. North Korea officially refers to Kim Il-sung as the "Great Leader" (Suryong in Korean 수령) and he is designated in the constitution as the country's "Eternal President". His birthday is apublic holiday in North Korea.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Sikh- guaoche on sketchbook page

Sikh  is a follower of Sikhism. Sikhism primarily originated in 15th century Punjab region of India. The term "Sikh" has its origin in Sanskrit term शिष्य (śiṣya), meaning "disciple, student" or शिक्ष (śikṣa), meaning "instruction".[23][24] A Sikh is a disciple of the Guru.
According to Article I of the "Rehat Maryada"a Sikh is defined as "any human being who faithfully believes in One Immortal Being; ten Gurus, from Guru Nanak Dev to Sri Guru Gobind SinghSri Guru Granth Sahib; the teachings of the ten Gurus and the baptism bequeathed by the tenth Guru; and who does not owe allegiance to any other religion". Sikhs believe in the equality of mankind, the concept of universal brotherhood of man and One Supreme God .
Sikhs are recognized by their distinctly wrapped turbansuncut hair, and iron bracelet (kara), although in the Western world this is not necessarily the case (Sikhs not keeping uncut hair are considered apostates).
The greater Punjab region is the historical homeland of the Sikhs, although significant communities exist around the world.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Shaman, watercolor on sketchbook page

primal-indigenous: Alternatively termed "tribal religionists, "ethnic religionists," or "animists," estimates range from 100 million to 457 million. (457 million is the combined total for "Ethnoreligionists," "Animists," and "Shamanists" from Barrett's 2001 world religion calculations. But this total includes all African Traditional religionists, which we have listed as a separate category.) This group also includes, but is not limited to, people whose native religion is a form of shamanism or paganism (such as millions of people in traditional Siberian shamanist cultures).
I didn't try to paraphrase this- it is directly copy and pasted from here-
I subscribed to a site called Practical Philosophy. Todays quote was this-

Web of Life

“Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect.
Chief Seattle
(1780 - 1866)
Native American

Monday, December 6, 2010

Buddhism, sketchbook page

Buddhism is a religion based on the teachings of Siddhartha Gautama, who lived about 26 centuries ago in what is now Nepal and northeastern India. He came to be called "the Buddha," which means "awakened one," after he experienced a profound realization of the nature of life, death and existence. In English, the Buddha was said to be enlightened, although in Sanskrit it is bodhi, "awakened."In the remaining years of his life, the Buddha traveled and taught. However, he didn't teach people what he had realized when he became enlightened. Instead, he taught people how to realize enlightenment for themselves. He taught that awakening comes through one's own direct experience, not through beliefs and dogmas.In the centuries following the Buddha's life, Buddhism spread throughout Asia to become one of the dominant religions of the continent.
Lotus as a Symbol
Lotus as a flower symbolizes the journey and advancement of the soul through the realization of the material world to be one with the supreme soul.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Chinese Traditional Religion

This one is the next largest religion,and it is comprised of many different religions."Chinese traditional religion" is meant to categorize the common religion of the majority Chinese culture: a combination of Confucianism, Buddhism, and Taoism, as well as the traditional non-scriptural/local practices and beliefs.
Fifty years ago religious Taoism was one of the largest, strongest institutions in China. Since the Cultural Revolution and the government's campaign to destroy non-Communist religion, Taoism lost, for the most part, the main mechanism through which it remained distinct from the larger Chinese religious environment: its large numbers of temples and Taoist clergy.You  can read more about Chinese religion here.

I have been consulting the I Ching ( prounounced ee-ching) for the past several years. Brian Browne Walker's  version is simple and concise and has been a grest help for me in times of uncertainty. Coins are thrown 6 times to create an odd or even number, to create trigrams. The combination of the two trigrams create a hexagram -there are 64 different readings possible.
It is an ancient form of  divination and philosophy. The qualities the I Ching counsels one to embody are modesty, awareness, acceptance, adaptability, compassionian, restraint, innocence, perserverence, tolerance,  reticence, devotion to inner truth, conscientiousness, balance and inner independance. The qualities the I Ching urges us to let go of are fear, anger, desire, arrogance, aggressiveness, anxiety, harshness, cunning, goal orientation and self indulgence.
Also the book refers to the "Sage". "the Creative" "the Higher power" and so on. One can put the word "God", "Allah", "my Higher Self", "the universe" "the great spirit" or what ever term suits. It is for anyone to use.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Ganesh 7"x7" watercolor on paper ( in my sketchbook)

Hinduism is the predominant and indigenous religious tradition of India. Hinduism is often referred to as Sanātana Dharma (a Sanskrit phrase meaning "the eternal law") by its adherents. Generic "types" of Hinduism that attempt to accommodate a variety of complex views span folk and Vedic Hinduism to bhakti tradition, as in Vaishnavism. Hinduism also includes yogic traditions and a wide spectrum of "daily morality" based on the notion of karma and societal norms such as Hindu marriage customs.

Hinduism is formed of diverse traditions and has no single founder. Among its roots is the historical Vedic religion of Iron Age India, and as such Hinduism is often called the "oldest living religion"or the "oldest living major tradition".
Ganesh is the Hindu God considered to be the Remover of Obstacles, Lord of Beginnings, Patron of Arts and Sciences, Lord of Intellect and Wisdom.