When I was contacted in August by Inside New Orleans staff to create a one of kind Mr. Bingle artwork for the cover, I was so excited! I always wanted to be on the cover of this magazine! I was so happy that this was happening ! The next day I marched into my studio with canvases and new paintbrushes ready to not leave until I created five custom Mr. Bingle ideas from scratch.
Why five? Because I love options!
This is how it started the process. First I did some research. Next I created a sketch idea of what would now be known as the cover for the December/ January issue. Lastly I painted it from the morning until that evening. I used every color because that's how Christmas feels to me. Christmas is a loving collection of colorful nostalgia memories!
After that I was filled with so many ideas that I literally could not stop. Isaac checked on me often offering support and questioning if I need a break. For days I painted Mr. Bingle in different scenes! But although I had many ideas and concepts to choose from -only ONE stood out. The magazine selected this one.
I love how it turned out.
Read more of the article which features a in-depth look of how my process and see all the my art featured in the pages of the magazine! Click here. https://issuu.com/jblpublishing/docs/2312web
A little bit of a backstory on my connection with the New Orleans character...
My paternal grandmother worked at Maison Blanche for many years, and I remember each year seeing Mr. Bingle in the store. I received so many beautiful clothes from that store. My grandmother always impressed us with the wrapping paper on the gifts and the beautiful garments she selected. The red bow was signature for my gifts from my grandmother and is also signature for Mr. Bingle. Just thinking of the department store and his legacy gives me so much joy.
Actually I love to remember old places in New Orleans that aren't there anymore. I think that is healing for everyone and also helps tie in the new concepts with the old history. And if you know me you know I love history, especially New Orleans history! I love jazzing up the scene with creative ideas of what I think might be a perfect sunny day at the place that is no longer in existence. This is an example of that.
God really blessed me with this opportunity and I am so thankful. I hope to encourage you and others to believe that with God nothing is impossible. And to please share some Christmas love and cheer with those around you. Hopefully this colorful painting brings some joy and a loving memory of the character that we all love and know about!
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Matthew 19:26 NIV
Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”