Copyright

All Materials copyright © 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 Atlanta Marie Carrera.... ART - POETRY - CHILDREN'S BOOKS - INSPIRATIONAL WORKS.
Permission requests for fundraiser series can be e-mailed to: AtlantasArt@ec.rr.com

Follow Your Heart...

Atlanta's Art features my personal works of original Art & Poetry which I am currently offering as "Thank you" gifts for donations to charities I support. Visit the links under my "Fundraiser Series" to learn more about these specially selected pieces.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Aloha Church

I call this painting "Aloha Church"

This church is St. Benedict's Roman Catholic Church in South Kona, Hawaii. They call it "The Painted Church" because the inside of the church is covered with the most beautiful paintings which illustrate the stories of the Bible
http://www.thepaintedchurch.org/

I painted it for a friend of mine who visited there and sent me pictures from her trip.  It was literally her dream come true.  The two birds in the upper right are her and her friend making their journey of faith across the ocean.

Poem, "I Dream" is part of my Faith Journey Series and Angels Series. http://faithjourneyseries.blogspot.com/2012/06/aloha-church.html

Monday, October 24, 2011

Spirit of the Butterfly

Spirit of the Butterfly

Scene:  This is a painting of Jenny at the Magic Wings Butterfly House which we visited with my friend, Deanna, in Durham, NC.

Inspiration:  The butterflies represent all the important people in our lives who have helped us along the way.  Like the butterflies that surround us, they often do not even realize the impact they have had on us.  It is their "spirit" which they share so freely with us that it leaves us in awe.  Watching a butterfly is like watching a child dance; We are mesmorized by their simple sincerity and lifted by their honest expression of emotion.

This is the signature painting and poem for my "Spirit of the Butterfly" Series.  http://spiritofthebutterfly.blogspot.com/2012/06/spirit-of-butterfly.html

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

California Countryside

This painting is based on a photo taken by a friend of mine on his trip to California. It reminds me of our drives from Reno to Lake Tahoe. I especially like the snow capped mountains in this painting.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Today

This is another painting for my poetry series. Jenny is the little girl who lost one of her balloons. The lighthouse was based off a post card a friend of mine sent me from her trip to Rhode Island.

Poem:  "Today" is from my Phoenix Rising Dream Series:  http://phoenixrisingdreamseries.blogspot.com/2012/06/today.html

This poem is about personal growth. At first, the woman is "stuck" in her own sadness, but that is now "Yesterday." She eventually moves past that into "Today" where she is open to other thoughts beyond herself and her sadness. After being in that stage for a while, she begins to see that there is even more waiting for her in the "Tomorrow" phase. She is ready now to explore that next phase. She knows she is changing, for the better.

The woman has her back to her past…The rain, which was her tears, is now gone; The lost child holds the colorful balloons which are hope; The dust becomes the sand which now she can walk on to support her; The invisible air makes the boat sail into the future; The dark cave in the lower left springs forth flowers. The aimless feather moves toward God (the sun). The bird represents inner peace that the woman is trying to achieve.

The woman sits on a clay hilltop (clay because God is molding her). God is the sun. He is always there when we need him. We need only look up. The balloon floats up, (it is hope) reaching toward the sun (toward God). She feels God’s blinding warmth. She draws her strength from the ocean, like waters of baptism which "change" her. She faces the mountain - the obstacles in her life she must learn to overcome. The "mountain" is also a lighthouse, because she is beginning to see the light in spite of the things she now faces. It is a beacon leading to her future. The woman is watering the flowers (the seeds) and is now ready to "grow" herself. She knows she is at this crossroad in her life and is ready for that future. Her sitting is a sign of acceptance now; she no longer fights it like she did yesterday. She is at peace with herself. She can finally rest from this journey she has been on.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Jenny's Jellyfish

Jenny's Jellyfish - This is a painting of Jenny & Mom walking on the beach finding Moon Jellyfish that are stranded. The theme is based on Jenny's favorite story, Jenny Jellyfish (I’m sure she mostly likes it because the Jellyfish has her name).  At the end of the story, the "helpful humans" must keep pouring water on the jellyfish to save them until the tide comes back in. It reminds me of the starfish story where the adult tells the child there are just too many that need help for you to make a difference. Then, the child helps just one and tells the adult, "Well, I made a difference to that one!" So in the painting, Jenny & I are trying to make a difference, one jellyfish at a time. The two of us just keep going no matter what the odds are against us. The two empty beach chairs are waiting there for Jenny’s sisters to return. Dad is in the background, fishing.

Poem: "I Walk With You" is for my poetry series Spirit of the Butterfly. http://spiritofthebutterfly.blogspot.com/2012/06/jennys-jellyfish.html
This poem and painting is dedicated to those who have made a difference in our lives. No matter how far apart we are, remember that you are always in our hearts.

 
 

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Garden Fairy

Inspiration:
This is a painting of Jenny, the Garden Fairy, making all the flowers grow in Grampa Frank’s garden. The focus of the poem is the growth of the inner person, just as the flowers show growth.

Scene: In my painting, I am the sunflower growing tall. The butterflies just above the sunflower are my rays of light (spirit) spreading to others. Jenny is the garden fairy. She hovers on a heavenly cloud above all the flowers, appreciating their beauty and helping them grow through her simple faith (She is a child of God filled with the holy spirit – a shining example of what faith can produce). God is the sun and the light and the way; for through him, all things grow.

Poem: "A Ray of Sunshine" http://spiritofthebutterfly.blogspot.com/2012/06/garden-fairy.html
The "Ray of Sunshine" is the inner spirit or your holy spirit within. It was "planted" there by an act of kindness someone else showed to you. Their act of kindness is just like when flowers spread their seeds which fall everywhere: Some of the seeds don’t make it, but some of them grow to be beautiful flowers themselves. The spirit has trouble growing when it is kept hidden – that’s when your fear holds you back. It needs the light (God’s love). Flowers grow with water just like your spirit grows in troubled times when you turn to God for help (that’s when your tears water it). Once you get past all that, it is like the flower which breaks through the ground and emerges for the first time (that’s the breath of fresh air and change). Still, the flower is new and fragile. It needs help from time to time until it reaches its peak of glory - That’s when now the flower can be the beacon for others; planting seeds of its own which will someday grow into other beautiful flowers.

Spirit of the Butterfly Series - Grampa Frank’s Garden is a magical place that all the children are drawn to.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Rainbow


Scene:  Hawaii, Jenny is the "Hula girl" in the lower right. I like my waterfall on the left. It's the first waterfall I've ever painted, and I thought it came out great.

Poem "The Promise" is part of my Spirit of the Butterfly series http://spiritofthebutterfly.blogspot.com/2012/06/blog-post.html
The Promise is about two people who grow into a loving relationship. At first, their love is just a thought. They don’t know if it is real. They only know they are excited, like the feeling you get seeing that heart cloud in the sky. The heart is love. The clouds keep changing shape. You are uncertain if you even really saw it. Then the love grows, slowly. You have these feelings which are "transparent" because no one but you can see them. You have not expressed them yet. The next step is when you take that first chance. You tell the other person what you are feeling. That person tells you also what they are feeling. This forms a bond and fuses the two of you together. Next, you can’t help the joy that follows. You are giddy like the love in spring. Then, others see your love for each other. It stands tall because you can no longer hide it with just the two of you. It is still a mystery to you (like the purple mist). You can’t even believe it is happening. You want to be sure this is real. You keep asking the other person and they keep saying it is. The other person reflects back your feelings of love. Finally, you decide to commit to marriage. You are ready to give that ultimate promise, just like the promise God gives us with his rainbow. In this promise, you must fully commit yourself. To always share everything, to not hold back, to give yourself totally to that other person. It is such a powerful promise. It is a promise in front of God. What God has joined together, let no man put asunder. The painting has heart clouds "like your heart suspended in air." You can even see those two heart clouds reflecting in the ocean below. The orange sunset which can’t be reached. The rainbow reflects on the ocean. The flowers are the Spring and the giddy feeling of love. The waterfall is the wonder which leads to the purple mist. Like the waters of baptism, you are becoming a new person. The two doves on the beach are the love birds. They are stating their vows to each other in front of all of God’s glory. Their promise, their rainbow (almost touching them) reflecting back God’s promise. The Hula girl is Jenny. She is the witness to all this love. The bird flying in the air is me. I am just taking in this beautiful event to I can go back and tell people with my squawking (but they do not understand my words because I am just a bird squawking).
 


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Jenny's Swan Lake

This was inspired by Jenny's love of ballet.  Jenny posed for the painting and chose the design elements. She also helped me paint some of the azalea flowers. We used the lake at Airlie Gardens as our inspiration.

Beautiful Ballarinas
Always Agile
Little Ladies
Learning Leaping
Entertaining Everyone
Talented Treasures

This is part of my "Spirit of the Butterfly" series http://spiritofthebutterfly.blogspot.com/ and has also prompted me to do a "Ballet Series" http://balletseries.blogspot.com/ with Wilmington scenes for the Ballets. 

Life's Journey


This painting was created to celebrate new life and the journey that begins life’s never ending cycle. The focus of the painting is the woman in a yoga pose (Prayer Pose) bringing inner peace through appreciation of the natural world that surrounds her. The background is set in Fort Fisher and features newly hatched turtles at the start of their journey to the sea. They are going to greet "Jenny" little mermaid girl who eagerly awaits their magical transition.

For my painting, I thought Yoga represented this Life Journey well because Yoga is about getting in touch with your own body and paying attention to it. Being pregnant makes you feel so much more of all the nature around you. The trees & the sea oats show the winds of change blowing through them. God’s sun is shining on you, blessing you. You see life everywhere…the new turtles just hatched, the birds, the tiny crabs. You have a more keen sense of awareness for all this life. The whirlpool in the bottom center of the painting is the movement you feel from your baby. Just like Yoga, you must stay calm and remember to breathe through your pain as you deliver. Taking your mind to where you are most refreshed, like the beach. The mermaid is the "magic" of it all and the final result of this beautiful event. She is my miracle child, Jenny.

Poem:  "Life's Journey" is part of my "Spirit of the Butterfly" series:  http://spiritofthebutterfly.blogspot.com/2012/06/jennys-castle.html

This poem is about my feelings when I was pregnant. Just that feeling knowing there is a baby inside you is so exciting. At first, you can hardly feel her moving and have to be so still and concentrate. You know there is great change coming and you must prepare for it. When you see that first hiccup coming from your belly, it is so amazing. Then seeing her twist and move is so wonderful. When it is time to deliver, you have to focus and really work to calm yourself. Hearing her first sound is something you just never forget. To see her screaming with her little hands in the air, you just want to hold her. Once she is calm and sleeping, you just want to stay awake and look at her. You can feel that connection even though she is no longer inside you.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Dreaming

Dreaming - The dreaming woman is connecting with the natural world that surrounds her.

Poem & Painting are for my "Angel's Series" as a fundraiser for Hospice in my grandmother's memory (Atlanta King Taylor).

http://atlantakingtaylormemorialfund.blogspot.com/2012/06/dreaming.html

Monday, August 15, 2011

Echoes

Inspiration: Like exploring the planets, this painting and poem explore the mysteries of our own inner world through the sounds we remember and then replay in our own minds. They are merely an echo of what we have heard, yet they are just as powerful as the original as we let them drift into our daily lives, changing our moods and behaviors.

Scene: This painting is from the view point of God, above the Earth. God is the sun. The stars are all his angels, balls of light, shining for us to see and draw strength from. In the painting, the sounds come from Earth and spread outward through the stars where the Angels are. The Earth is surrounded by clouds because the people on Earth cannot see all this. They cannot behold this beauty yet. Their view is clouded. The lines in the lower right are the sound waves created by all the voices, spreading now throughout the heavens, God’s kingdom never ending. In the upper right is a shadow planet. Like the Holy Spirit itself, it is a mystery, God’s mystery. Why is it there? What does it mean? We do not know. We may never know. You do not see things the way God sees things. Our perspective is so small in comparison to His. The moon is our hope. It shines brightly for us each night. It tries to draw our attention to the heavens with its ever changing faces so we can look up. Like a flashlight pointing us in His direction. God wants us to see him. He wants to share this glory with us. That is His deepest desire. That is His love for us.

"Echoes"
My mind is filled with sounds of your singing.
Your laughter echoes and makes me smile,
Infinitely replaying throughout time and space.

Poem: "Echoes" - When you are reminded of the sounds of your loved ones who have died (like them singing a song), you are so joyful at that memory that it makes you want to sing as well, even though it is only an echo of their voice now. You can even hear them laugh; you will never forget their laugh. You cannot help but smile with these thoughts. You can draw on them at any time, infinitely, because those memories of them are always there for you. Nothing can take that away from you. They are still there; up in the heavens where time doesn’t matter and space is forever.

Phoenix Rising Dream Series - This poem and painting celebrates your inner motivation through sound and memories. Like a battle cry, you are called to action...moving ever forward toward your dreams.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Angels

Angels - This painting was made for my poem "You Walk With Angels." 
I like the simple color scheme and the brightness of the angels and the sun.  

Poem:  "You Walk with Angel" is part of my Angels Series fundraiser for Lower Cape Fear Hospice Foundation to raise money in the name of my grandmother, Atlanta King Taylor.
http://atlantakingtaylormemorialfund.blogspot.com/2012/06/blog-post.html

The poem is meant to be a church hymn and was written for a friend's mother who served her church as music minister.  She passed away just a couple of months after my grandmother.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

The Horizon

This is the second painting I made for my poem, "The Horizon ":  http://phoenixrisingdreamseries.blogspot.com/2012/06/horizon.html.

The Sun and Sailboat represent a compass providing direction for those who seek it. The rainbow is life's promise and the bridge ensures safe passage over troubled waters.

Elements of Life

Elements - This painting represents The Five Elements: Earth, Wind, Fire, Water, and Spirit (Heart).

Scene:  In this painting, I have "translated" the themes of the Five Elements and used them in my poem to reflect "Emotions." The green serpent in the lower right creates "tears" (water) which is sorrow creating the river. God’s Rainbow (his promise to us) holds the serpent at bay with a rainbow bridge for people to get past (and the bridge becomes bars like a jail holding down the serpent). The rainbow represents Faith (Spirit) ("For whoever believes in me shall not die"). The "tree" is the hand of God holding fire (like the burning bush). He is the "Light" in my poem (because "God is the light and the way"). Music notes in the tree shows that God gives us our talents to share with all. The swirls at the top are the Wind (which is "Hope" in my poem). It blows away the bad and refreshes with the good. It creates the ripples in the water to remove the tears. The Rose is "Love" (Heart) lifted high because it came from the Earth but now transcends toward the Sun (God) in heaven. ("Return to God what is God’s.") Music symbols are in the calm waters because they calm the soul. The reeds at the bottom are God’s people (growing through their emotions).

Poem: "Elements of Life
Music fills your Soul
with Tears, Hope, Light, Heart and Faith.
Life’s emotions, shared.

Poem - The poem is designed to comfort through the sharing of music, art & poetry; sharing our emotions with each other through these mediums is what connects us all to each other.

Phoenix Rising Dream Series - The expression of life’s emotions is what sparks our dreams.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Phoenix Rising


Inspiration: The Phoenix will rise in spite of everything thrown at him. Inner strength is gained from those very hardships. A person is changed by the events they experience. Positive things can come from the most difficult challenges.

Scene: The Phoenix is from the mythical bird who is reborn from the ashes. My Phoenix is purple to show that it is spiritual and royal. In my painting, the Phoenix is surrounded by various natural disasters (Hurricane, Water Spout, Tornado, Earthquake, Volcano, Fire, Tsunami, Flood). The Phoenix is able to absorb all this and grow stronger from it as we must learn to do. Finding God is difficult. He is the Sun which is represented by a Sun Dial because it takes time for us to heal. God is also the pillar of fire (showing his strength) on the left side sprouting from the water (like your baptism) and creating a rainbow (his promise to us and sign that he is there for us). The rainbow and sun are clouded because people have a very hard time finding God during their difficult times. But God is always there if we will only listen or look for him. Going through these difficult times with God is what makes us "born again" like the Phoenix. The colorful clouds at the top of the painting represent uncertainty. God has given us the choice of following him or not. Only we can decide our ultimate fate.

Poem: "Time Heals" - This poem was written to help a person who is in transition from the turmoil created from a difficult life event. By relying on one’s faith to rebuild and start again, that person can successfully achieve the balance they once had. The "reborn" self is stronger for having gotten through this difficulty.

"Time Heals"
Time heals with God’s help
if we will only listen.
Find the strength within.


Phoenix Rising Dream Series - This series was created to explore what your dreams inspire you to do. The Phoenix represents your ability to rise above so that you can not only achieve your goals, but then, in turn, use your experiences to help others through their own difficult times.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

The Cabin - New Paris, PA



This is a painting of "The Cabin" owed by Reynold's brother, Steven. It is over 100 years old and has been renovated several times. Just 30 minutes from historic Bedford, PA, we stay here for our family vacations. It is a true "work in progress" including the many murals we have painted on the walls over the years.

Steven's Barn - New Paris, PA


This is a painting of my husband's brother's barn in New Paris, PA. It sits on an old farm (affectionately named "Jake's Run" after the family dog) with over 20 acres of land in the panoramic Pennsylvania mountains.

South Lake Tahoe


My mother owned a house in Zephyr Cove in beautiful South Lake Tahoe. We would go there for family vacations over the Christmas holiday break.

Emerald Bay - South Lake Tahoe



Heaven on Earth - This is one of my favorite places on earth. My husband, Reynold, and I would take side trips to Emerald Bay whenever we visited South Lake Tahoe on family vacations.

Grandma's Gravy


This second kitchen painting was also created from a staged photo of items we use to make Grandma's "Gravy" for our favorite Sunday Italian dinner - Pasta with meat sauce.

Wine and Cheese




I wanted to buy prints for our newly remodeled kitchen, but couldn't find any I liked. So, I created this painting using photos I staged from items we use every day.

Canyonlands

This is a painting that Jenny asked me to paint from a picture that a friend e-mailed us. Jenny enjoyed looking at all the photos from his cross country trip. I was excited to show her pictures of the Grand Canyon since she had never seen it before. But the picture that interesed her the most was this one of Canyonlands.

The Lollipop - Wrightsville Beach, NC

This is a view from my mother's back yard of a cove called "The Lollipop" on the sound side of Wrightsville Beach. I gave the painting to my mother for Christmas.

Poem:  "The Magical House" is part of my Family Series poems:  http://myfamilyseries.blogspot.com/2012/06/blog-post.html.  This poem is written from the perspective of the grandchildren who gather and play at the family home where they are free to explore and create anything they can imagine.

June's Family's Church - Weyman Methodist Church





I painted this church for a friend of mine to give to her mother for a birthday present. Her family maintains this small church in Riegelwood, North Carolina.

1st Baptist Church - Elkin, NC


I painted this picture for a friend of mine whose family lived in Elkin, NC when she was growing up and were involved with the church there.

Horseshoe Curve - Altoona, PA



I bought a postcard of Horsehoe Curve at the Altoona Railroaders Museum when we went there on a family vacation. This painting was based on that picture.

Lake at Shawnee State Park in PA


I painted this Lake scene from photos I took while on vacation in Pennsylvania. We went swimming in the lake at Shawnee State Park - 10 miles from Bedford, PA.

NC State Bell Tower, Raleigh, NC

The NC State Bell Tower was the second one I painted for my husband, Reynold. Our daughter, Christina, attended college at NCSU.

(sorry, this print not available for sale or distribution).

UNC Bell Tower, Chapel Hill, NC

My husband, Reynold, asked me to paint two college bell towers for his office. The first one is the Carolina Bell Tower in Chapel Hill where our daughter, Lana, went to college.

(sorry, this print not available for sale or distribution).

Jenny's Castle

I painted this castle for my daughter, Jenny. It is based on Cinderella's Castle in Disney World. Her Godmother, Deanna, helped us pick colors. Jenny painted the flowers and some of the pink parts of the castle. I also had this print made into a puzzle and some playing cards for Jenny's Christmas present.

(sorry, this print not available for sale or distribution).

Sunrise

I painted this beach scene for a friend of mine. We are so lucky to live near the beach where a walk along the shore can do wonders for you.

Augusta National Golf Club, The Masters

My husband, Reynold, went on a golf trip to watch The Masters in Augusta, GA. He brought back many pictures of the golf course at Augusta National Golf Club. I choose one of those pictures to use for this panting which I gave him for a wedding anniversary present.

(sorry, this print not available for sale or distribution).



Jenny's Flowers


When my daughter, Jenny, was 2, she loved to look at flowers wherever we went. I would take pictures of them for her. I made a collage from some of those pictures and then used that to base this painting on.

"A Flower's Bloom"
A flower blooms but once
and then is gone,
but for those who have truly experienced its beauty,
it forever remains within us.
 
Poem & Painting are for my "Angels" series for Hospice fundraiser in memory of my grandmother, Atlanta King Taylor.

Winged Horse from the Outer Banks

On one of our family trips to the Outer Banks, we saw the Winged Horses on display celebrating 100 years of flight. I was so inspired by them that I wanted to paint one too. I chose scenes from the many places we visited in the OBX over the years. This is one of my favorite paintings.

Aunt Carol's House

I had to do a second painting for my Aunt Carol since my dad took the first painting from her. I asked her what was her favorite place on earth. She said it was the house where she raised her boys. She sent me a picture from the real estate company who sold it, and I painted from that.

Cape Fear Waterfront, Wilmington, NC

After showing my Aunt Carol pictures of the mural painting we did at the cabin in PA, she asked me to paint something for her. I thought she might enjoy a scene from Wilmington since she lived in Kansas City, so I painted a view of Wilmington from the banks of the Cape Fear River. When she showed the picture to my dad, he asked if he could have it. My dad now has this painting hanging in his office.





Covered Bridge in Bedford, PA





This was my first painting ever. My daughter, Lana, wanted to enter the "Family" Art Show at her school, Cape Fear Academy. Another family member had to submit an art piece with her. I agreed to paint something and got a few tips from my sister, Teresa, who graduated from UNCW with an art degree. I chose Colvin's Covered Bridge from some photos I took on our family trips to Bedford, PA. We later painted this same scene in a large mural at the cabin owned by my husband's brother. Both my daughter, Lana, and my daughter, Christina, helped with the mural.