The Faith of Chimayo. This is a before and after of one of my recent paintings that will be part of the group show at the Blue Rain Gallery in Santa Fe on July 4.
The first image is obviously the under painting. At this stage I only knew I wanted the figure of this little girl to be placed in the lower right space of the composition. I also knew I wanted to build a story with this composition about the old church in Chimayo, NM. I visited this church with my friends Ben McPherson and Sean Diediker earlier this year. There is a legendary story about the origins of this church. On the day we visited there was a group of blind people leaving as we were entering the sanctuary. The little girl in this painting represents the thousands of people who make a pilgrimage to El Santuario de Chimayo every year in hopes of finding peace of mind and body. I thank Bella McPherson (Ben's daughter) for being the perfect model for this painting, and also Nicolai Fetchin for the photo's and drawings he did in Mexico in the early 1900's. Those were the stylistic inspiration for this painting.