Posts

A Tribute to Atlas Church’s 10 Years

Atlas, our church and family community in Greeley, CO, that we helped start, turned 10 this last Sunday. As my friend Kelly put it, Atlas celebrated their 10th Anniversary – not birthday. Birthdays happen no matter what. Anniversaries are something you work hard for. You are celebrating work, blood, sweat, and tears. So, Happy Anniversary Atlas!

Since it’s very beginning, I have been in charge of the series artwork for the services. It’s one of those rewarding little side projects that can also drive me crazy. These were almost always put together at the last minute with little or no direction. Usually Jeff or Tim would send me the series title pretty late in the week I would kick myself for forgetting to be more on top of things and stay up late creating the graphics. Some of these are embarrassingly bad. Really I can’t believe I’m not just hiding them. And some, in my opinion, are still pretty lovely.
I thought about putting up all 10 years worth of art, but that was too much! But there are quite a few here. These are just some highlights (and low lights… ha). These are not in any particular order, so keep scrolling.

One of our very very first series was called 7 and was about the seven deadly sins. Each week I designed and printed these photo postcards and hand stamped and stuffed paper bags for every person. It was our first really successful series. I don’t have a slide graphic, because we didn’t have a screen back then.
bookmark_stripes2

All sorts of Advent Series:
great hall slide
advent in luke advent_joy
incarnation slide
title_slide

I still really like the way this one looks:
Incarnation

the four loves copy


My favorite Easter series artwork. We also wheat pasted these giant flowers all over the walls of the building inside and out. It was pretty great. BBM slide
This one had a series of watercolors starting with a seed. Each weed the little sprout would grow. On easter morning it turned into a flower. I still don’t get the series title.
seed slide_week7Become_lantern series artwork beginnings in luke_option 2
gods series artwork_title_slidebless_series_artwork

I would really like to take off that bad vignette filter on this one…
Branches Broadcast changed
This was from a larger painting I made. I still really like this piece.city_slide
Another one from the very early days. Called “Elements.” Every program was a hand stamped block print. If I recall I think I printed them on watercolor paper and spent hours carefully tearing the edges of every sheet.
elements
Pretty sure I was working on our very first church directory when I made this one. Lots of people I love in those tiny photos. There are still 11 or so of us from the very early days.
Family_slide follow option2 front cover
Another one from one of my paintings. I totally forgot about this piece.
garden
If I remember correctly, I think I did this on Tim’s laptop while driving home from KS. I still like how it turned out.Insides
These are kind of hard to see here, but I loved this set of collages. This series was from the very beginning of Atlas when I was still young and crazy enough to make one original piece for each week instead of an entire series. These were a Lenten series. Each represents a chapter in John leading up to Easter- water to wine, washing feet, palm branches, black friday, etc. We printed them out tall and skinny. They looked really cool.
john programs1
john programs2
I still like this one. Grunge lives on!

letters
These two photos were from a series called Holy is Normal (I think…). I took a different photo for each week. This one with the names was about loving the street our church is on. I had the various business owners hold up signs with their names and took a photo of them.
Names
Slide_cathedrals
dependance
This is a more recent one. I really love it. It feels very “me”.
scattered_v2
Another one from the very early days:
new john
I can’t take credit for this one, but it was pretty cool. Two artists in our community – Brenton and Amy. Converted parables into graphic novel form. They did one for EACH week. it was crazy awesome.
parables
I this was from this last year. I still really like this minimal design.subtraction_v2
I LOVE this wood texture. I think for the Black Friday artwork I did an inverse of this so it was black with white highlights instead.
tangible slide
This is definitely still one of my favorite series and artwork. We had just gotten kicked out of our space. We spent several weeks meeting in the back yard of a house instead. It felt holy.Temple
This was for a Thanksgiving series. I think I printed cards out that people could write thank you notes to people on as well.THANKS Program
peacemaker_slide_v2
Another oldie.
Philippians_2
This series ended in having a giant picnic in a park.porches title
I have no recollection of anything about these next couple…PulseRekindle
The only thing I ‘remember’ about this artwork was that I HATED it at the time but got so frustrated with it that I just sent it on anyway.Remember_series Art
This series was really fun. They had artists do live painting each week. The idea was about repainting the way we look at our faith.repainting copy
Whoa. This one looks SO outdated and cheesy now! I swear it was cool at the time. Hopefully…ha! I think this was our second or third series we did. Everyone had these really elaborate 3-ring binders that I made and added stuff to each week. It was so much work.
Revolution_cover_V2
I still really love the subtlety of this one. Reminder to self – use more neutral colors…
Signs and Wonders_v1right side up_cover
Some seriously bad filters on this one…
Romans
This one is kind of odd. It was one of those where they sent me the series title and I was like “What? Seriously?” Now what am I supposed to do with that…salt light city

Obviously from about 6 years ago. Not cool any more.
shift_for_screen
I wish I cropped this one a little differently. I still like the color scheme though.
slide
I want to get rid of the secondary text on this one.
slide
Why oh why is that bird graphic pixelated? Really Betony? spirit_slide
I really love how the word here is slightly off kilter.spokes slide
I like how this background turned out. But that font is just way too much…Stars
Another one that looks so outdated now… 🙂
STORM

The diety formerly known as...these_three copy
tribes_slide
trust_slide 2
Another collage series that I still really like.
Week_1_slideWeek_2_slideWeek_3_slide
This was the original Atlas Logo and title slide, later switched to the current circle with triangles (designed by Kathryn Nash).atlas prayer request postcard_front
Thanks for indulging me 🙂

Happy 10th Anniversary Atlas!!

Sketchbook Project “Spectrum” Collaboration

This moleskin sketchbook was filled up in a color spectrum as a collaboration between Kelly Cook and me. She gave me the book as a Christmas present. We passed it back and forth between us, each adding bits and pieces. We gave each page a loose color theme. It was a fun venue to just experiment and play without worrying about the end result. The book was created to be part of The Sketchbook Project, a crowd-sourced library that features thousands of artists’ books contributed by creative people from all around the world. I am mailing it off tomorrow!

See more of Kelly’s art and process here.

Sketchbook-project

IMG_3313IMG_3309IMG_3304IMG_3300IMG_3298

Sketchbook Project “Spectrum” – Kelly Cook & Betony Coons Collaboration from Tim Coons on Vimeo.

 

Branches Online Art Show: Feature #1

We are so excited to share with you the first set of artwork from our open online art show “Branches.” Photography, drawing, painting and writing are represented here.

We’d love to hear/see your interpretation of the theme “Branches” and will be accepting submissions through the end of August and be posting new pieces. Perhaps your piece could be/ will be in Feature #2.

IMG_8972

Bill Youmans. He says of the above piece, “notice how the branch from the upper left becomes 3 branches, and then following the stem of the leaf as it spreads into the leaf structure, the 1 into 3 pattern repeats itself over and over, smaller and smaller.”

 

Elaine Furister_The Velvet Tree

Elaine Furister – See more of her work on Facebook

1-branches

 Kelly Cook – To see more of her artwork and purchase this piece

040614152029

Brittany Schmidt

 

Essay by David Shelley:

Grieving Lost Branches

As I write this, two younger, more vigorous men are cleaning up the mess in our backyard. A heavy, wet snow came through one night. It brought much-needed moisture for our trees. But it arrived at the end of October, before the trees had shed their leaves. The heavy snow collected on the leaves, and branches as thick as my waist snapped like fortune cookies. Nature’s pruning took away locust, aspen and maple branches, and half of our old willow. A lot that once looked forested now looks as though a tornado had passed through. One young locust had the pliability to bend all the way, its top touching the ground, before I broomed off the snow, allowing it to spring back. But it straightened only halfway. It now leans like an old man with his walker.

A tire swing once hung from one of those willow branches. My father loved to swing his grandchildren when they were small. He, like that once-mighty branch, is gone now, and his grandchildren have grown and left the house. This was expected, but I dwell on it with mixed feelings, not unlike the mixed feelings I have had when saying good-bye to too many departed friends.

It is natural and good to get snow in October, and natural for mature trees to shed major branches at times. There is a time to break down, and a time to build up, Solomon noticed. But we do not merely notice such seasonal changes. We mourn them. I will miss the massive beauty of the willow, and the welcome shade it brought. It is now in a season for starting new branches–not because it is spring, but because most of the old branches are gone.

The willow itself does not seem melancholy. It will prove hardy. Years from now, it will have great branches again. I am the one who mourns the loss of those branches, because I enjoyed watching that tree spread its green canopy, its shady glory, over our home. I enjoyed watching my father play with his grandchildren. It is the past tense that lingers like a dark cloud.

A friend of mine said that when his father died, he felt as if his covering had been removed and he was exposed to something–I’m not sure what. Looming mortality, perhaps. I think of him as I look at our willow, now looking as ragged as a family name after a scandal. I feel the incongruity of that welcome water, feeding the tree it broke, renewing the process of beautifying and beneficial growth. Will we ever see unlimited growth without pruning, I wonder, or will we gain an eternal appreciation for the necessity of breaking off branches to reinvigorate new growth? Will I someday experience heavenly pruning and exult in it? Or will I never be pruned again? I long for a pure faith in the Vinedresser, a faith that trustingly welcomes either option, because I am tired of grieving the loss of old, familiar branches. – November 2012

 

To hear more from David find him over at Facebook

FREE Download! Art from Kelly Cook!

Kelly Cook is our featured artist for this month!

Bio:  Kelly Cook grew up in Wyoming where she learned to appreciate quiet days and big empty spaces. Recently she has found her place in art, restoring broken things. She loves to recycle … One man’s junk into another man’s treasure. Most of her paintings and drawings are done on something that needed to be alive again, like old book pages and four panel doors.

She lives and works in Greeley Colorado, with her author husband Jeff Cook, her sons Augie age 9 and Beckett age 7. It’s an honor to work with Tim and Betony on this project, wondering what it would be like to be a giant… And knowing what it is like to be a pilgrim. You can find her work at Cookstah.etsy.com

Kelly has added a special surprise to her artwork, that will only be revealed when you download it from giantsandpilgrims.com this month.

[purchase_link id=”408″ style=”button” color=”white” text=”  Download”]

(Note: click the download button, then the purchase button – it will be $0.00, then click “download now” to get the high resolution file)

See more of Kelly’s work at her etsy shop – https://www.etsy.com/shop/Cookstah