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Light and Shadow

Jul 17, 2013

PaletteI’m no visual artist. Give me a blank wall and a roller and that’s about as good as it gets around here.

I raised a couple of visual artists, however, and I know several others, and I’m always amazed at how they can take a blank canvas (or some other mysterious medium) and turn it into something incredible.

The new song this time is titled, “The Painter’s Hand.” It talks about the Master Painter–the One who does it best–and the masterpiece He intends to make of each one of us.

It’s available as a medium-voice solo with cello obbligato. It’s the next installment of Heather’s album, “Reaching for the Light,” and the album title is taken from this line of the lyric:

“He knows the strength that grows in shadow when I’m reaching for the light.”
[soundcloud url=”http://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/101358816″ params=”auto_play=false&show_artwork=false&color=281785″ width=”100%” height=”160″ iframe=”true” /] Available on CD: “Reaching for the Light” (All CDS)
Cello by Ramona McConkie

About a month ago I was getting the score ready to upload, when a wise young Facebook friend posted this message:

Imagine this: you just painted an absolutely beautiful painting. It’s exactly what you wanted, and you’re really proud of it! You absolutely love it, so you give it to someone special. The problem is that they constantly point out the flaws. There’s always something that just isn’t right. And they don’t hang it up, they just leave it on the ground, not really caring what happens to it. Imagine that Heavenly Father is the painter, and you are the person He gave this painting to. Keep in mind that it breaks Heavenly Father’s heart to hear you constantly criticize yourself, out loud and in your head… You are absolutely beautiful in His eyes.

Thanks, Liberty! I couldn’t have said it better.

Valarie Olson


My dear friend Valarie Olson was my co-conspirator on this song.

As we worked on it together, we thought about the innumerable things in the world around us that challenge our sense of self-worth. The way our Heavenly Father sees us is so much more accurate than the way we often view ourselves.

We hold ourselves to unattainable and often undesirable societal standards. He sees the true beauty that is our inheritance as His sons and daughters. We see the flaws… the rough edges… the unfinished canvas. He sees us as we can become.

Cover Art with captionMy niece Adrianna is the photographer responsible for the album art–she’s also the lovely young lady in the picture… however that worked!

Here’s the shot she took, captioned with the line from the song that inspired the picture.

Click for a larger, high-quality file. You’re welcome to download it for any personal use.

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