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  • Writer's pictureKaren Lembo

Reflections After the Storm

A major storm this past Christmas impacted thousands of travelers and the loved ones waiting to share the holidays with them. Thankfully we were staying home, and the storm soon passed, leaving billowing clouds and puddles in its wake. I was looking for inspiration for a show entitled "Forces of Nature," and the references I snapped that day in a nearby field led to this mixed media piece. While I originally meant to focus on the clouds and field, as it developed, I became more intrigued by the puddles, and the reflections they captured.

In the past couple years, I've begun to play around with mixed media and layering, in order to add dimension, texture and duality to my work. In this piece, I first layered some journal pages that included prayers and promptings from the Lord as I have walked through difficult seasons. I also layered tissue paper (including sewing patterns) and modeling paste to add further dimension and interest. I think this approach helps capture my "reflections"--the idea that difficult seasons can also have their own sense of beauty, a kind of joy mixed with melancholy that have been the hallmarks of my life over the past couple of years. I've experienced a number of personal losses that, while not tragic per se, have really challenged my faith. At the same time, I am rejoicing in the growth I am experiencing as I work through transitions and transformations.

I'm curious...can you relate? The past three years have been particularly unsettling for many people. While loss and transition have always been a part of human experience, I'd say this has been a particularly unique time in that it has been so widely shared in our global, internet-led community. Feel free to share your thoughts--I'm always encouraged and inspired by what others are thinking and experiencing.

I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear the Lord and put their trust in him--Psalm 40:1-3

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