top of page
nest header.png

Art Journal

"In each brushstroke, a story unfolds"

This is one of my favorite days. I Love the beginnings and I Love the day that final elements are added to a piece and I, as Bob Ross used to say, "call this one done"

Not that the process isn't thrilling, but it must be how a writer feels when they type in...the end.

It's the moment the story has been traveled through and the destination is reached.

Today is that day!

I had a thought that maybe it would be a good time to talk about the mysterious world of Commissioned Art.

It only occurred to me in recent days that there is a bit of a stigma about reaching out to an Artist and sharing a vision, inspiration, or story in order to collaborate and have them create a special piece for you, or a loved one, or for a particular place in your home or business.

So, this is my attempt at answering some of those questions and dispelling some myths.

What is Commissioned Art?

First of all, allow me to say What it's Not. It's not just for the wealthy and the elite. It may scream extravagance, but can we just say NO to that right now?! In my 35 plus years of painting, which actually began painting for others, I've had the pleasure in serving so many people in many stages of life, income, and status.

I've also spoken to people who, regardless of those achievements, still felt a resistance or that "it's out of my league" (so to say) to ask a professional artist to create something personal for them and I've watched them settle for an empty wall or a mass produced piece they somewhat connect with that fits. It's ok, but having this experience is a bit extra and richer in many ways.

There I said's about a few perspectives, in this artist's humble opinion, it's a mindset.

*Do I deserve this?

*Is my story worth sharing?

*Who do I think I am having an artist create something for me?

*What will others think?

Thankfully, I create commissions quite often with those souls where these thoughts are not an issue, but I want to love on those too, who quite possibly feel they aren't deserving, worthy, or that this route is above them. Lovingly, these statements are lies my friends and often roadblocks to making your home sing with a one of a kind piece of art and having the experience of working with an Artist who's heart is rooted in working with you to tell the story of that home, of you, and this moment.

Now that we have been given permission to count ourselves worthy,

Let's leave this here and move on.

What is a Commission?

Commissioned Art, very simply stated, is a one of a kind piece of art resulting from a relational collaboration between the receiver and the creator.

To the right, there are several examples of pieces that have been commissioned and I've had the honor to participate in creating the pieces you see here.

Some Types of Collaborations...

*A Prayer Painting | "light of Peace" (upper left) where the client met with me, shared her vision in their newly built home, and then trusted me to pray and create a large 48"x60" oil painting for their home and family.

*A piece inspired by an environment | "Cocktails" (upper middle) A Wife commissioned this piece for her Husband for Christmas. She shared how inspired he was by the atmosphere in a restaurant they frequent and how he loved the artwork there. I took inspiration and created a custom piece and she surprised him with it.

*A Pet Painting | "Daisy" (upper right) Also a gift from a Husband to his Wife of their

great dane puppy

*A Public Space Painting | "Harmonious" (lower left) This painting was one in a series of 6 paintings commissioned by a large church. One for each of it's campus's to be displayed during a teaching series on mental health and wellness. These were created on paper and professionally framed.

*A Personal Moment Painting | "I Love U". (lower middle) This, as in all collaborations, was so special. This long time married couple both had this photo from their dating years on their phone and wanted it interpreted into a painting. He surprised his Love with it.

*An "In Process" Piece, Claimed | "Her Complexity is Beautiful" (lower right) I often post pieces in process on social media, this incomplete piece was seen by someone who saw her story in it and claimed it by saying that she wanted to be the first to know when it was done. It now hangs in her office to encourage her as she works.

*Painted Furniture + Accessories

*Wall Murals

*Painted Accents

I List some of the paintings and projects that I've created here to share that the sky's the limit when it comes to a commissioned piece of art. There's no category, story, or subject matter off the table as long as the artist agrees. This is why "Choosing the Right Artist for You" is an upcoming journal entry.

The bottom line on this, the first journal entry about commissioning a painting, is that ...

Art and Commissioned Art is for everyone! Whether it's for your home, your business, for a gift, for a landmark moment, or just because you like cats (LOL), you can work with an artist to have the art that you want.

Look for upcoming Journal Entries relating to this...

*Choosing the Right Artist for You" The best fit

*Commission Costs" Understanding the Value

Looking forward to it!

Artfully Yours,

"In each brushstroke, a story unfolds"

34 views0 comments

... that results from interactions and experiences that occur in a passing moment and becomes it's own, unique interaction and experience for someone else."

woman with eyes closed with quote overlay
"Harmonious" Painting by Artist, Tina Lawver

It's so true! I've been blessed to be witness to it and participate in the telling.

What an honor to be an artist in this world today. To be called to place loaded brush to clean canvas and allow the story to unfold. It doesn't begin there though.

I was deceived believing it was all about me, my skill, my ability and not considering that I was simply a participant in the bigger thing. Though it's important to have those tools to communicate, it's not the vital thing.

We think we are doing something....teaching a class, making art, writing a story....whatever it is,

BUT we are actually doing a deep dive into something so much more.

Oh yes, I began thinking I was painting a sweet moment between nature and human nature.

woman looking at chickadee
"Worthy" Original Painting by Artist, Tina Lawver

In "Worthy", the narrative is so much deeper and speaks to the deep longing to know that we are worthy of moments like this and how important it is to be present and acknowledge this special, once in a lifetime space that may never happen again.

Moments like...raising children. They will never be 3 years, 27 days, 4 hours, and 21 minutes old again. Be present. soak it in. You're worthy to be present and give significance and value to this moment. It'll never be "this moment" again. It's so very precious and so are you.

statue surrounded by magnolia flowers
"Likeness" Painting by Artist, Tina Lawver

As I consider this piece "Likeness", the memory of walking through a cemetery in Georgia. One of those places that the statues on the graves look as though they could come alive at any moment. Not in a creepy way, but in a way that I had the realization that each one was chosen for the relationship of the loved one they were chosen to represent, to be the first impression of the one who would experience it decades and a century after that person had passed on. Leaving a life story and footprint not to be forgotten, a mark was left for us and every time another person (me, that day) walks by and gazes up, a new chapter is written. Shadows of a life lived and a narrative that had impact and mattered. My experience with her resulted in this piece of art.

Art is a vehicle for the voice that results from interactions and experiences that occur in a passing moment and becomes it's own, unique interaction and experience for someone else.

How incredibly special is that?! How this perspective has changed how I view not only the significance of the experiences (even common everyday ones), but the potential of what can come from them.

Artfully Yours,

painting of statue hanging in room setting
"Likeness" painting by Tina Lawver

Both paintings "Likeness" (left) and "Worthy" can be experienced at New Towne Gallery located in Millersburg, OH and are available to be purchased.

13 views0 comments

35 years ago, I was a young Momma, madly in love with those babies and their Father, on the surface, doing ok. What most everyone in my life didn't know is that I was horribly broken.

My heart, body, + mind....broken and my spirit, listening to voices that meant me harm.

Sadness would overtake me. Tangible feelings of unworthyness would lead me and place me on, seemingly, safe paths. No risk, just managing what I had for fear of losing it all.

photo booth picture of Mother with 2 children

Doing everything I could to hold life together without the skills, guidance, and faith to do it. I did my best as I was and made all the mistakes. Mistakes in Love, but mistakes just the same with consequences that we don't get rescued from having to deal with.

If I could speak to young Tina now, I would tell her to find community. I would say to find women of faith + ask them to mentor, teach, + guide her. I would say release pride and be don't have to pretend you're ok.

Find a wise mentor to teach this young novice how to be a Wife, a Mom, a Friend, a woman of Valor and Courage. Tell her why she's worthy, Tell her how important these years are as a Mom and how very quickly they slip away, never to be lived again.

I would ask God to Give her ears to listen and a heart to receive. For her to be so teachable. I would ask for Truth and Transformation and a Renewing of her mind.

I would share with her how precious she is to God and that He has a beautiful plan for her life.

I would tell her that her story matters and that her story is valuable and that failure is not defining, but a teachable moment and that her overcoming is a part of that beautiful story.

Occasionally, I grieve her as she was so lost so early and I look back and see how these beautiful young children were used to save her. I also celebrate her for she's grown + is still growing in all those areas.

She was me. She IS me. A part of me that informs a story of overcoming that I seem to only be able to express through art.

woman with bird on shoulder art by Tina Lawver
"Worthy" , by Artist, Tina Lawver

I've come to value stories.

From the beginnings, the messy middles, and the victorious conclusions. I've come to realize that LOVE is a connector, that GOD created us for MORE + that our stories, no matter how the telling goes, are abosulutely DIVINE.

I've also realized I've been visually communicating stories and mapping journeys since the first time I put brush to canvas so now I'm leaning in to this more in 2024.

("Worthy" currently on display at New Towne Gallery)

artist teaching art class
Artist, Tina Lawver, Teaches art workshops

There is more here...

YOUR story matters. YOUR overcoming is inspiring.

Our stories are worth telling.

Thank you for allowing me to share my heart and for those who've chosen to make my art a part of their story over the years, I am humbled and grateful.

I'll be accepting commissions January - March in 2024

Please feel free to contact me

artist holding brushes in front of painting
Artist, Tina Lawver, visually communicates divine stories


*creating a prophetic piece

*a piece of art about your story

*in memory of a loved one

*a vision you have for your home or business

I'm honored to create for you and continue this story with you.

"Visually Communicating Divine Stories"

Artfully Yours,

29 views0 comments
bottom of page