I am SOOO excited to be sharing a very talented lady with you today. She is a bereaved mother who is using her experience in such a powerful and healing way. I hope you enjoy her artwork (and ahem… GIVEAWAY!) as much as I do ;)
I am so honored to be guest posting here today. My name is Renee, and I want to share with you a bit about myself and my art.
I knew since I was a tiny child that I wanted to be an artist. When I considered doing anything else in life it just didn’t feel right. For a while I taught art. After that I worked from home, gave art lessons, and tried different types of art but always struggled to find clear direction for it. Then I became a Mom to my oldest daughter. When she was about 16 months old I became pregnant with my second child. Up until this point my life overall had been pretty easy.
But suddenly that changed. At the 18 week ultrasound we were told our baby could not survive after birth. The ultrasound showed no amniotic fluid surrounding the baby, and they said she had no kidneys or bladder. I was surprised when they told me that most likely the pregnancy would continue normally because my body would provide all that she needed until her birth. Later I found out that one name for this is “Potter’s Syndrome”. When I heard this term, it reminded me of the Bible verse that says: “We are the clay, you are the potter; we are all the work of your hand.” Although she was missing these vital organs, I believed that God had a plan for her. The doctors expected us to end the pregnancy, but I just never felt in my heart that I could do that. Throughout the pregnancy we prayed for a miracle. We really believed she would be healed. But when she was born, so sweet and perfect, she lived only a few minutes.
While I was pregnant I started a painting for her. After she died I finished it. It was a combination of colors, words, and two images that reminded me of her: a butterfly and a rose. I displayed it at her memorial, and hung it on our wall. As I looked at it, I realized this was something I could do in her honor: create paintings in memory of other babies who were on this earth only a short time.
So now that is why I paint. I paint remembrance paintings based on information people share with me about their babies and the way they want to remember them. They are much like the Abiding Hope Collages, except I use watercolor, ink, acrylic, images, canvas, pens, etc. Each painting is unique to the baby it is created for. I paint for those who have experienced miscarriage, still birth, or infant loss. My hope is that each painting will be a tangible reminder of who each baby is, and that we will see them again. I want each painting to be a comfort to those who are missing their children, and a statement that their short lives do indeed matter: to us, to God, and in so many other ways we cannot know in this life.
Here is one that I made recently for twins Kai and Mason:
I would love to give one of my paintings away to one of you. You could enter this for yourself, or for a friend or family member who has lost a baby.
There are several ways you can enter this giveaway:
**you must be a follower of Small Bird Studios to enter
- follow Renee’s blog
- visit Renee’s website
- share this blog post via Facebook, twitter, pinterest, blog etc :)
Thank you, Franchesca, for the opportunity to share my story and my art here, and thank you to all of you who enter this giveaway. I look forward to creating a painting for one of you.
***THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED***