ABOUT THE ARTIST

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Morrisville, NC, United States
My wife Emily and I currently live in Morrisville, NC with our son Evan. In July of 2010 my life changed dramatically when Emily and I adopted our beloved son. As a consequence of this life change I have not updated this blog for a long time. As Evan has grown, and new expenses have been introduced, I have decided to again accept commissions from those of you who would like to have original work done. You may request work by contacting me at davemyers1977@gmail.com, and I am also beginning a new website to promote this service at artisservantportraitsandmore.blogspot.com - I currently charge $225 for 11x14 drawings and $175 for 8x10s. I sell prints of my work (either from this site or the new one) for $25 11x14 and $20 for 8x10. I hope that you will enjoy the works here displayed, that you will visit my new site, and that you will contact me with your comments at davemyers1977@gmail.com - Dec 30 2011

Saturday, December 05, 2009

THE YEAR OF THE PRIEST: 3RD POSTER



This drawing is of my very dear friend, Father Gregory Plow, T.O.R. and is intended for use in my newest "Year of the Priest" poster. Father Gregory and I have been best friends since my Sophomore year of college, when we met each other at a time when both of us were experiencing a conversion back to the faiths in which we were raised. Father Gregory was raised a Catholic, and I was raised in the Southern Baptist tradition. What endeared Father Gregory to me, then, as now, was his absolute genuineness, generosity, and contagious enthusiasm. When I met him, I could easily have said "Here is an Israelite in whom there is no guile." He is a man, now a Priest, who is alive with the Joy of the Holy Spirit. He has been that way as long as I have known him.

There were many roads which carried me towards the Catholic faith: Art, History, Scripture, Tradition, etc... But of all the things that God used to give me this precious gift, our friendship and spiritual brotherhood were the most vital. Years later, when I finally made the decision to come into the Church, I was also diagnosed with cancer. Father Gregory and his mother Jean were my co-sponsors, and were present when I was confirmed in my hospital bed by a local Priest. Over the next nine months, they came to the hospital and brought communion whenever I was inpatient, and took turns taking me to daily Mass when I was at home. This is only one of the examples of why I am so indebted to the generosity and friendship that Father Gregory extends to everyone he meets. He is a Priest's Priest, and he was meant to be a Priest. I chose to use his image in this new poster because Father Gregory is the perfect "poster boy" for the Priesthood.

Frank Bua took the photo that this drawing was rendered from. Frank caught this shot of Father Gregory at his "Mass of Thanksgiving," that is, his first Mass as a Priest. The image portrays Father incensing the Gospel before proclaiming its message to the People of God. I was immediately struck by the grace and symmetry of the image. Frank has a great eye, and Father Gregory's manner of offering Mass (with the order and precision of a mathematician - he is one) lends itself to this type of image. It is interesting that the poster focuses on the mandate by Christ to "preach the Gospel to every creature," because Father Gregory is a Franciscan of the Third Order Regular, and Saint Francis is famous, among other things, for preaching to creatures (birds) when humans wouldn't listen, and for his oft quoted line "preach the Gospel at all times. Use words if necessary."

The image can be seen as an icon of the intense relationship which exists between the Priest and the Gospels. The Priest is commissioned by Christ to embrace the Gospels, and to open Christ's words to us in their proclamation and also in his preaching. The Proclamation of the Gospel is so sacred that incense is used. I found an excerpt from a website authored by the Abbot of a Monastery. His description of this rite is very beautiful, and explains well the significance of incense in the context of the Mass, especially with reference to the Gospels:

"What are we expressing with this incensing of the Gospel Book? It is a sign of devotion toward these holy words of and about our Savior, which have been preserved for nearly 2000 years, in reverence and love. As the sweet smoke (always first blessed by the priest) rises toward and surrounds the holy book, we are acknowledging: these are the words that God spoke when He became man and walked on this earth; this is the story of our salvation; here is the promise of everlasting life; here is the testimony of God’s love for us."

You can find the entire article at:

http://wordincarnate.wordpress.com/2009/
01/08/incense/

God send us Holy Priests!

7 comments:

  1. David, thank you for this art. I is a wonderful image of a priest and of Fr. Gregory. Your description of him is perfect and his love and enthusiasm are captured in you image of him.
    I met Fr. Gregory at Franciscan a few years ago through my daughter, a nursing student and cross country runner. Fr. is their spiritual counslor and a fellow runner. His smile is straight from the Lord. He has helped the students and coaches through personal and spiritual struggles and shown God's love to them consistently. Thank you again for what you do. May God send us Holy Priests.

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  2. You are so welcome and thank you for your comment! I am not surprised that Father Gregory has made this impression on you and so many others. Thank you for your words!

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  3. Dave, this is SO BEAUTIFUL!!! Of course, I am biased: both the subject and the artist are two of my very favorite people! Thank you for your beautiful witness to the faith through your art.

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  4. Thank you Jean! I am very glad that you like it!

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  5. Father John Shanahan, TORDecember 07, 2009

    David, Thank-you for this beautiful drawing of Father Gregory; you captured his image quite well.

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  6. That is beautiful! It really captures Father well. May God bless you many times over for this wonderful work you are doing.
    JMJ+

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  7. Nice work. I came across your blog while “blog surfing” using the Next Blog button on the blue Nav Bar located at the top of my blogger.com site. I frequently just travel around looking for other blogs which exist on the Internet, and the various, creative ways in which people express themselves. Thanks for sharing.

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WELCOME!

I appreciate your time and your interest in my work. If you are interested in knowing more about me and my philosophy of art, please feel free to scroll to the bottom of this page. I would rather spare those who have no interest in such things from having to read about me before looking at my work. God bless you :)

The Vocation of the Artist

I firmly believe that art is meant to serve others, especially in lifting the hearts of people, through "ephiphanies of beauty," (John Paul II's letter to artists) to the contemplation and the glory of God. The artist participates in a unique way in the inspiration of the Creator of all things, and knows something of His joy in the act of creation, for "the act of creation is an act of love."(The Agony and the Ecstacy) This act is essentially bound up with the mystery of the Incarnation of Jesus, in which what had been invisible was made visible in His person, His life and work, and finally in His death and resurrection. The artist is exhorted by the very perception of his gift to its service. Art is not merely, nor should it ever be, a vehicle for selfish ends or cheap shock and awe, but it must seek to give joy to the lives of others. The artist is then in the end merely a servant of truth, beauty, and goodness, and his work must serve to convey these to a wider audience. "Nor do men light a lamp and put it under a bushel, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven." (Matthew 15-16)I believe that the artist finds in the lives of Jesus, and of His foster father Joseph, essential role models, especially in their hidden life at Nazareth. Though very little is handed down to us in the Gospels or in tradition illuminating this period in Jesus' life, I believe that this hidden, simple, carpenter's life of "working quietly" (2 Thessalonians 3:11) can be a model for all artists, in which delight is daily sought in the manifestation of beauty in wood, paint, charcoal, dance, the stage, and music. This is a life of humility, where the artist freely accepts that this world, including his own work, "will pass away," (Matt. 24:35) but what it points to never will. Obedience to inspiration, especially as it is inspired by God's Word (itself the revelatory self-expression of God) is the artist's highest calling. This new site is dedicated to this higher calling of the artist, to this challenge.

You will find included in this site examples of my own work, as well as links to other sites which
celebrate the arts, and especially challenge the artist to reach the fullness of his own abilities
in the service of something greater than him or his work. I hope that you will enjoy this site, and
take full advantage of its links, especially the Letter to Artists of our Holy Father (of beloved memory) John Paul II. Thank you for your comments and your consideration of this website.

David Myers