Sunday, November 2, 2014

Send #scripturedoodle to Thailand this CHRISTMAS

The other day I posted this picture on Instagram... and today God is showing how incredibly true this really is, about a dream of mine: #scripturedoodle. 

God gave me the idea about three years ago for #scripturedoodle- a quick illustration of a bible verse. I first thought it was just for me, but God has shown me #scripturedoodle is not just for my artist heart but it is for everyone, for people wanting to explore God's word in a creative way. As we are all allowed to sing in church we all have the freedom to try art in worship. Where the spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.

Three years later God is using #scripturedoodle to put hope in the hearts of children in Thailand. 

Here's a story about a little girl called "Hope" and her #scripturedoodle shared by my new missionary friend, Kathryn:

"She wrote Ephesians 5:8 (in Burmese). It says "for once you were full of darkness, but now you have light from the Lord. So live as people of light!" She told me that God put a dream in her heart to start a "Jesus home". When I asked her what she meant, she said, "I want to start a home for children who are unwanted and show them how Jesus is our Savior! At my home they will learn that Buddhism can never save them, only Jesus gives light and life!" And she is only 11 years old!! 

Hope, like the 149 other children, is an orphan. She is part of the Mercy home orphanage where she receives care from missionaries. Sending her a #scripturedoodle starter pack will not save her life, it won't even feed her, but it will bring her hope. It will be hers, and it will help her dream, and as a child, I think that's a need, a treasure, a sweet privelege of  being young. And if she can learn the hope of Jesus at a young age it will carry her through the rest of her days. 

Here's what I know: 
1. I can't do this without you and group of people passionate about helping. 
2. God is doing something incredible here and I don't want to miss it. 
3. This is a huge goal #scripturedoodle starter packs for 150 kids = $3000 
4. Christmas is on December 25th and my dream/mission/hearts cry to God is to get the packs there by then. 

Our goal is to raise $3000 to send 150 #scripturedoodle starter packs to the children of Mercy Home and the Life Impact Centers. Please consider helping. What does that look like? Prayer-first and foremost for the children of Mercy Home and the Life Impact Homes (three homes total). Pray for their safety and God's blessing over them. Second, consider sponsoring a pack for a child for $20. If you have kids maybe help them put together some sort of fundraiser to help, like a bake sale. If you are a doodler or artist, consider selling some of your own #scripturedoodles or artwork to help raise funds. If you're not able to give then share our story with anyone who will listen. And pray for God to provide the funds, I know he will because GOD IS FAITHFUL. 

We have set up a gofundme page where you can donate: 

And if you want to learn more about the ministry team serving there you can visit their site: 

God's story is the sweetest, and I'm so glad we get to be part of it!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

A Week of Romans

One of the things I love about the word of God is no matter how many times you read a passage, he can give you something fresh each time.  For me #scripturedoodle has been the avenue to expand how I see God's word and what he teaches me through it.  And starting monday, I want you to join me!

We'll be studying through the first seven chapters of Romans and using #scripturedoodle along the way. Here's how it will go. Each day we will read one chapter from Romans starting with chapter one on monday. Read through the chapter keeping your eyes and ears open to see and hear what God has for you. Hopefully there will be one verse that sticks in your mind. Choose that verse! Maybe its for you, maybe its for a friend, but make a #scripturedoodle of that verse.

It doesn't have to be fancy and you can simply use pen and paper, that's what I do normally. Here's how:
1. Find your bible verse and read it again.

      2.  Does a picture pop into your head when you read the scripture? If so get started drawing the picture, make sure to fill up the whole page and take time to add details.

3. If a picture didn’t pop into your head, look at the verse again and pick one or two words that are visual… for example the word “love” what comes to mind when you read that word, maybe a picture of a heart? Continue picking more words and doodle through the verse.

4. Sometimes you love a verse but you don't get a picture in your brain right away, in this case I just do some hand lettering of key words and then I usually add some fun background doodles and color patterns to spice it up. I'll usually mix a couple different font styles to add emphasis to certain parts.  If you're feeling intimidated by the whole drawing thing this would be a great way to start!

5. Post your #scripturedoodle to Instagram or Facebook and be sure to hashtag #scripturedoodle so we can all follow along. 

I'm honestly so excited if you decide to join me for this study! #scripturedoodle has opened up a new thing in my heart when it comes to art and God's word and I pray it will do the same for you. Also for a second I just want to say- #scripturedoodle is for everyone! You don't have to be an artist to be part of this creative worship thing. It's not about making a masterpiece- it is about worship. Take time to use your creativity to worship God, to make Jesus famous. And if you don't think you have creativity let's use this week to find it. Just say yes, and let's do this thing... together. 

This Sunday at 8:30pm EST I'll be teaching a FREE online #scripturedoodle class to get us ready for the study. You don't have to take the class to do the study, but if you want some extra encouragement it would be great to sit in. You can email me to register.


Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Why #scripturedoodle?

Have you ever been chasing a dream that maybe wasn't what God had for you even though it was a good thing? That's been my last two years. Even though I was pursuing my art it wasn't the part of my art that He wanted me focused on..... Here's a few things He's been teaching me:

After much stress and fighting God sometimes without even knowing it I finally said okay. And can I just say that it feels so good to say yes to God! I know now where he wants me and that is spending time on #scripturedoodle. For the past couple years I steered away from it because frankly I didn't think the idea could sustain me financially, but as we know but sometimes need reminding- it's not about the money it's about obedience. And if God calls me to it, he will make a way financially for it.

All to say, you'll be seeing a lot more of it in the coming days. I feel like God wants to use the creative worship space of #scripturedoodle to make himself famous and to draw hearts to him. I feel so strongly that #scripturedoodle is not just for the artists- it is for anyone who wants to explore God's word in a new way, that is my heart and so I want to make it available to everyone. I have this wild pipe dream that someday we could illustrate the whole bible with #scriptuerdoodle.... I can't even wrap my mind around that one but I'm just speaking it so that God knows I hear him and I believe that nothing is too big for him.

I also have a huge confession to make, I am NOT A BUSINESS MASTERMIND.... not a big surprise to those of you who know me well, (especially my husband). The whole idea of growing this thing is a bit scary and seems too much for my creative brain, but I do know that if this is where God wants me he will guide me and show me the steps to take to build it.

SO... what is he calling you to? Will you say yes?

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

September Classes: Registration Open

If I may just for a moment, share my heart on why I teach: First and most I just love art! I love everything about it, I love making, teaching it, seeing it, all of it. I choose to share it because God has put in my heart this desire to help others be creative. I honestly think He wants it to be available to everyone. Some of us have a natural knack for creative things but some of us don't, If you're in the "don't" category, I want to help you try, that is why I teach, even if you are not the best you are still allowed! I teach for beginners, I will not let you leave me feeling defeated, you will love it I promise. Take a night for yourself, with some friends or just come and you will make a friend. I'm teaching four classes this month, two online and two locally in Charleston, Here is the schedule:

SUNDAY, September 14th @8:00 EST $10
During this class April will share the heart and art of #scripturedoodle, a creative worship experience. You will have the opportunity to create your own #scripturedoodle in a medium of your choice and have April as a resource to help you along the way. This is a great class for anyone, artsy or otherwise. Offered Online Only. Register Here.

Hand Lettering
SUNDAY, September 28th @8:00 EST $10
This class is an introduction to the art of hand lettering. April will share the basic tools and three different lettering styles to get you started with making your hand lettered masterpiece. During this class you will have the opportunity to watch April work and ask questions as you practice. Offered Online Only.Register Here

Gold Leaf
Thursday, September 11th @7pm $20
Gold leaf is my newest love! I can’t wait to share how easy to use it can be. You will use it and make a one of a kind gold leaf mixed media piece I promise you will love.  Supplies provided. Offered locally in Charleston, SC. Register Here

Wednesday, September 24th @7pm $20
Watercolor- in this class you will learn the basics of watercolor how to and create your own abstract watercolor art. Don’t be scared, this is a great class for you even if you’ve never painted before. Supplies provided.  Offered locally in Charleston, SC  Register Here

*All local classes are held at: 1445 Bexley Street North Charleston, 29405

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

August Art Classes

This summer I've had so much fun teaching some art classes in my home studio. I've put together an August schedule and I would love to have you come and be part of any of them. All of these classes are beginner level and fun for artists and otherwise. SO if you wouldn't call yourself an artist but you want to try getting crafty, PLEASE come! I promise you will have the best time. Here's a look at the August Schedule, email me to sign up.

August Art Classes
Hand Lettering
SUNDAY, August 10th @8:30 EST $7
This class is an introduction to the art of hand lettering. April will share the basic tools and three different lettering styles to get you started with making your hand lettered masterpiece. During this class you will have the opportunity to watch April work and ask questions as you practice. This class is only being offered ONLINE in August.
Drawing Basics
Monday, August 18th @7pm $15
This is an introductory workshop to the basics of drawing. Students will work in graphite and learn the art of “drawing what you see”. April will give an overview of how to use highlights and shadows to make your drawing come to life. Even if you’ve never drawn before this will be a great class for you! Offered locally in Charleston, SC.
Thursday, August 21st @7pm $20
During this class April will share the heart and art of #scripturedoodle, a creative worship experience. You will have the opportunity to create your own #scripturedoodle in a medium of your choice and have April as a resource to help you along the way. This is a great class for anyone, artsy or otherwise. Offered locally in Charleston, SC.
Intro to Watercolor
Monday, August 25th @7pm $20
Intro to Watercolor- in this class you will learn the basics of watercolor how to and create your own abstract watercolor art. Don’t be scared, this is a great class for you even if you’ve never painted before. Offered locally in Charleston, SC
Color Mixing
Wednesday, August 27th @8pm EST $7
Here April brings introduction to the art of color mixing using Acrylic paint. You will learn the basics of the color wheel and what to colors to add where to get the perfect hue. This class is super fun and gives you the tools to make a masterpiece, a great choice for a first time class.
Email to sign up:

All local classes are held at: 1445 Bexley Street North Charleston, 29405

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

my "fruitful" series

It is with the proudest little heart I give to you my latest work the "fruitful" series. Can I just say I am over the moon about the way these turned out, not only because of the way they look but mostly because of what God has whispered to my heart in the process.
If it's okay, I just want to share a little testimony about this season I've been through lately. A couple months ago I wrote a blog about how I used to paint for myself. Sharing that for the past year or so I've felt pretty starved creatively and somewhat in a fog of purpose when it comes to my art. I used to always know who I was as an artist and since becoming a mother I've felt just lost in it all.
So before starting this series, with the support of my priceless husband we decided that I would just paint, paint for myself and seek God for a series that would be just what He wanted to bring to his people through my work. Instead of painting for others or trying to create work that would sell I just wanted to paint for the sake of worship and creativity, the purpose he'd called me to 8 years ago.
I truly felt that if I was to paint what God inspired me to paint and if it was true to my heart as the artist then God would do the work of selling it and providing for our family. He is after all our provider. didn't come right away but with some prayer and experimenting came my "fruitful" series. All I can say is Thank you God! My heart is full and just so thankful for this work he's given me.
In preparing to list them for sale I received a message from someone I love telling me they wanted to buy the entire series of originals. I feel in one way it's God saying yes, I will bless your labor, and maybe to follow my heart and paint for myself. And just for all those preconceived notions that I'm overwhelmed with orders and sales every week, I'm not.

I love that life with Him is a journey and in your craft, whatever it is, He can use it to sharpen you and draw your heart to His. Thank you for letting me share! and I would LOVE for you to buy a print of your favorite. You can visit my shop here to do so.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Everyone is not a leader

Lately I've been working through the question of... what if I'm just a worker bee? I mean let's face it... there's only one queen. Growing up a thought I was a leader but sometimes the thought of leading something big overwhelms me. This morning Robert and I were reading through Romans 12 and verses 3-9 spoke to the heart of it.

For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you. For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your[a] faith; if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead,[b] do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.

The gifts we do have are ours because he's given them to us right? and they're the best for us because HE GAVE THEM TO US. In the last couple verses Paul names out seven gifts from God, and only one of those gifts is being a leader. SO maybe I'm not a leader, I will say that looking at the list I feel much more comfortable with some of the others listed, I love to encourage and I can say confidently that I am a GOOD helper. If I'm working with someone and they give me a job- I will get it done, with bells on. I guess what He is showing me is....if I'm not a leader- THAT'S OK, and I'm going to find freedom in that. What I am- is the one he's made. And my  job is to say to God, "show me my gifts according to your will and show me my place in the body".

I love how he says, "Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but with sober judgment".... yes, so many days I need that. Remind me Lord that I am not "the body" but just a part of the body whose only job is to make you famous. And the best way to do that is know who I am in the body and then be the best member I can be. 

SO... maybe I'm not a leader but here are a few things that I think I am: 
an example
an encourager
an inspirer

What are you? 

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Summer Art Classes

 So... this summer I've decided to teach some art classes in my home studio. They will definitely be more of a sharing creativity than a structured art lesson. Just think fun+creativity+new friends with some learning mixed in. If you have always wanted to explore art but been a little timid of jumping right in or buying a bunch of art supplies just to be left at your kitchen table with crickets chirping not knowing where to start then these classes are for you! I will supply everything you need and help you get your feet wet. We are going to have the best time- and let's face it, I know you need some time for yourself. So make your husband put this kids to bed and come on. Here's whats coming in June:

MONDAY- June 2nd -@7pm -$15
 Intro to Watercolor- in this class you will learn the basics of watercolor how to and create your own abstract watercolor art. Don’t be scared, this is a great class for you even if you’ve never painted before.

TUESDAY: June 10th @7pm- $20
Gold leaf is my newest love! I can’t wait to share how easy to use it can be. You will use it and make a one of a kind gold leaf mixed media piece I promise you will love.

THURSDAY: June 19th @7pm- $15
This night is just for teens, if you are 13-18 come to create with the girls. We will be making a 5x8 hand collaged mixed media journal- Bring a friend.

SATURDAY: June 21st @10am- $15
A Saturday morning of coffee and crafting, in this class I will guide you through making an 11x14 hand painted mat and scripture print of your very own. Painted in acrylics or watercolor this can be a piece to hang in your home and be a reminder of His truth for you.

The first class is an intro to watercolor class this coming Tuesday, June 2nd at 7pm. The cost is $15- all supplies included. I'm hosting the classes at my home 1445 Bexley St. Email me to sign up:  You can also print a copy of the class schedule here


Monday, April 28, 2014

STUCK and hoping my way out of it

Stuck…have you ever just felt stuck? Stuck in a situation that you hold little control over? Presently that’s where I stand. Going on our third week in the hospital little Penelope has only spent half a day of her life outside these walls, you can maybe see why I feel stuck. Ultimately I know God holds the key to being unstuck but I can’t seem to figure out what to do in the mean time. I've felt so supported by friends and family in this time, but I also feel a little bit in survival just don't cry for two more days and by then we'll be home and we can breathe a sigh of relief. Except, there isn't a near end in sight, we're still going through lots of tests and scans to figure this whole thing out. So in my “stuck” I’m just waiting…not sure that’s the best choice but honestly I feel like that’s all I can handle right now. I wait and I trust that He will make me strong and restore me along the way.

I haven’t been clinging to much scripture in all this mess but just this morning Isaiah 40:31 popped into my head, "but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength, they will rise up on wings like eagles, they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not faint". After writing half of this post a friend brought me the most delicious lunch along with some prayer and scripture for me and Nelly and guess what verse she felt God say was for me.... you guessed it Isaiah 40:31. Don't you just love when God does stuff like that? HE HEARS US... and then just in case we forget he sends friends to remind us that HE HEARS US.

So dwelling on this verse I can say- Surely my hope is in the Lord and not man, but I feel led to pray specifically for the renewed strength… the strength to run and not grow weary, to walk and not faint. Frankly right now I'm sort of laughing at God thinking, you better bring it because you know it's not coming from me, my strength is about gone and I am entering into that, "I'm so tired, look at how bad we've got it... why haven't you healed her yet" state of mind.

  And then when I'm done crying I let down my pride and I just ask: Lord would you bring renewal my way? Even though I feel stuck and don’t know the way out of this mess, I know who you are and I know your word. I put all my hope in you, I trust you God! I trust that you will not give me more than I can handle, and I trust your timing and purpose in it all… So I’m hoping in Him and asking for renewal and on days like this when I feel that’s all I can manage, maybe that’s all He expects from us.

 Thinking maybe I'm not the only who needs a little encouragement today I made a #scripturedoodle of this verse and you can download a free printable version here

Thanks again to everyone for your prayers and support 

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

I used to paint for myself...

I used to paint for myself... when I was in high school and college I think I made some of my most creative work. I felt such a freedom in what to create. There may have been guidelines from a professor but not rules, they felt like a blueprint of possibilities.
a painting of my bearded beau from my college days... one of my all time favorites
But most of the time there was also no buyer... no client to fund the life of the artist.  Over time My work funneled mostly into live "worship art" if you will, paintings for events and church services, a different style from my studio work but still fueling the look of my style as a whole and work as an artist. My live work would bring commissions from families based on scripture having a similar style. Vibrant colors usually nature inspired with scripture throughout. I really love this work, the look of it (although I often say its not something I would hang in my house). I love painting for families and letting the Holy Spirit lead my brush and inspire me. Here is one of my favorites:

I lovingly refer to this piece as the "Antonelli Painting" painted for a sweet family

Somewhere along the way though.... I've lost it, not my desire to create but my ability to do so in freedom. Where has it gone???? I don't have the answer, but I think it's a mixture of the pressures to bring in a paycheck and trying to make work that will sell. I also feel this odd and annoying pressure to "be someone" on social media and have a great following hoping it will fuel a successful art business. Over the past year anytime I make work these questions run through my brain, What do people want to see? what's trendy? What else is out there? How are other people doing it? And it is so draining. I never used to think that way, I was only thinking, what did God want me to create? What did he want to say to the people who would see my art? Surely one can't always disregard the thought of marketing or the "client" but in my heart of hearts and in a "perfect" world I dream that I can make art that is truly inspired by God that I love and that other people will be blessed by. And I think that's what God wants for me. For him to be my guide and number one source of inspiration. I know he wants to release from me that comparison and drive for "success," but I'm not there yet. I see progress and the goal, but I've not reached it.

So my prayer in this next season is that God would guide me and discipline my heart. Guide me to receive inspiration only from HIM and not from what I see others doing or what I "think" will be successful. I pray he would discipline my heart in my creativity. Knowing He is the source I pray He would pour into me his creativity. That He would be made more famous through my work.

the backgrounds coming along for my new series

Last week I decided to try something I haven't done in a couple years. I decided to start a new series, just for me. Something new, and different in a style that maybe wouldn't be my normal go to. I just want some freedom in my creativity. Thanks to the incredible support of my husband he said, "just do it, just make art that you love and don't worry about whether it will sell or not, just create something. God is our provider after all, not ourselves but Him.  So here I go... and this is the test. I'm seeking God asking what he would have me create but I am also creating for me, painting for myself for the love of the game. God is faithful always and I know his faithfulness remains in my journey through my art. Just yesterday I finally got some solid inspiration on the direction for these pieces and I'm super excited about it, can't wait to share more.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Let's Collaborate

Y'all it has been a while since we've done any kind of #scripturedoodle collaboration around here and the other day my girlfriend said, "it's time". If you don't know what it is you can read more about it here. In a few words #scripturedoodle is a quick doodle or illustration of a bible passage. For me it's a great way to look at God's word from a new perspective and as an artist it brings that visual element that I love. I do it during my bible study time, morning or night, whenever I get my mind straight to make time for Jesus, can I get an amen?

SO... starting tomorrow I'm inviting you to join me for a super low commitment- short and sweet collaboration, just to get your feet wet. We'll be going through Habakkuk, don't worry it's only three chapters so we'll be done by friday. How it works: Let's read a chapter a day, maybe read it through once and then read it again to get a better handle on it. Then, choose ONE verse or a couple if they fit well together to draw a simple illustration of what the verse is saying. I usually use pen and paper, but whatever your heart desires is what you should use, you are the boss! Lastly- post it on IG or FB and tag #scripturedoodle #habakkuk so we can all follow along.

Very briefly let me say that #scripturedoodle is NOT about making excellent artwork for people to ooh and aah over. It IS about worshipping God. It IS about unlocking a creative element in your time with Jesus and it IS about freedom in Christ. If you're still not convinced you should try this here are 5 reason why you should!
I'll see you tomorrow.

Monday, March 3, 2014

The Garden Party of the Century

Yesterday was the sweetest day, a garden tea party to die for. I'm just saying that Martha Stewart has nothing on my friends.

 I'm not a firm believer that you need a baby shower for every baby, sometimes I think it's a little too much, so when my girlfriends said they wanted to plan a shower for Penelope I was a little hesitant, I just didn't want them to feel obligated to fuss over me. But once they convinced me it was a good idea I was tickled to oblige... I mean it's always nice to open presents and spend time with girlfriends.

Whitney, Maribeth, Angela and Ashley went all out once the theme of a tea party was decided on. I walked outside to see the most picturesque tea party that could ever be imagined and I should have cried, everything was so beautiful! I didn't take nearly enough pictures but here's a glimpse of it all.

We played a super cute game where everybody brought a hair bow for Penelope and I had to guess who it was from, then after my guesses (which were all wrong except for one), gals gave words of wisdom or shared sweet thoughts about me and baby P. It was so thoughtful and unlike most tacky baby shower games. So put that one in your vault ladies.

Penelope got so many cute clothes, reflective of my style which was my favorite part. I was always worried that I would get a bunch of tacky pink outfits if I had a girl, but seriously every little outfit was perfect and lovely. Among them were 5, yes 5 super cute swimsuits... we must be supposed to go to the beach every day this summer!

It was the best afternoon! My sweet friend Kristin gets the prize for coming from Columbia with her nine day old baby!
I loved getting to see my friends and celebrate the little lady inside, I guess every baby does need a baby shower.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

The Day Nothing Went Right

The other day I couldn't seem to do anything right when it comes to my art. I've been working through some new products for the spring, lets just say it was a day of trial and error for sure.

 I've been asking God what to pursue, what's going to be best? My heart is to produce excellent work that will honor God and help support my family, so He is my number one consult in planning.

Do you ever wrestle with this balance... great work that will sell but more importantly work that is true to yourself as the artist and God the source of it all? Well that's where I am, yet to have an answer but still asking Him persistently what's next. Surely he knows best, because he is my Father, I want most of all to be in His best. I know he will answer and I won't be discouraged at the time it takes, I will persist in asking until I receive the answer (this is not always my mindset, believe me) but this time I am resolving to TRUST, knowing that God is Faithful always.

 Since I couldn't do anything right in my work I decided to clean the house, spend some time with Jed and try for a killer dinner for my man. All three of which were moderately successful. Praise Jesus because Lord knows a sister needs a little pick me up with nothings going right.

The Sweetest part of my day, playing with my boy
Dinner was actually a big win. The best black bean burger recipe I've found, topped with barbeque sauce and sriracha. I've never had great success with sweet potato fries but I found a killer recipe on Pinterest. You should definitely put them on your list to try

Thursday, January 23, 2014

For all the Worshippers

This morning I picked up a favorite book of mine called "How to Worship a King" by Zach Neese. Every time I read a few pages I wonder why I haven't read it cover to cover five times, because it is SO GOOD. It's strong, sometimes in your face truth about Worship. What God deserves and what our worship does. I just can't say enough good things about it. If you don't own it do yourself a favor and buy a copy... because I won't be lending mine out ;).

That being said, the part I read today was about Praise as a weapon and how powerful it is against the enemy. I loved especially one part that I couldn't help but doodle. So today it's a free printable because I just thought we could all benefit from having this truth in front of our face, especially for the days when you're in the valley feeling a little weak against the enemy's schemes. Just start singing. Praise it up y'all.

heres the link to the printable, I'm a black and white kind of girl, but i think this would be cute printed on color paper too.