Emerging Perspectives: Student Chapters

The Spirituality of Art: Finding God at the End of a Paintbrush

Anna Rose

What did I get myself into? These were the first thoughts in my head as I squinted to get a better look at the glacier I was supposed to hike up to… almost too far away to see. With a group of other artists, I was supposed to trek up the steep side of a mountain to Lake Louise and the receding glacier behind it around 8,000 feet above sea level. Here in the Wind River Range in Central Wyoming, the nearest town was a couple hours away so there was no turning back now. We gathered our tripods, panels, brushes, and paint and hoisted our art supplies onto our backs and strapped bear spray to our fronts for easy reach. It was my first ‘advanced’ Plein Air hike, and I was about to discover just how difficult this art form was…

…Now, here I was, on a treacherous trail carrying haphazard boards and paints while worried a Grizzly bear might jump out and eat me. Nevertheless, we all made it up to the glacier, and I set to work on my painting… only for a swift gust of wind to blow my oil paints, art piece, and tripod all into my face. Despite some ruined clothes and a ruined painting, I had a marvelous journey. Something changed in me after staring at that lake for hours, I had spent so long quietly observing that I felt more connected to nature that I had ever been before. That is when I began to get an idea that drawing and painting nature may be a way to better understand and connect to the environment…


Find the rest of this chapter in Emerging Perspectives on Religion and Environmental Values in America HERE.


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Religion and Environmental Values in America Copyright © 2019 by Anna Rose is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.