Springtime in My Soul


My initial goal for this text was a playful, modern feel but it was not working so I looked to historical styles and chose Italian white vine from the 15th century. I departed from the traditional color palette to reflect the springtime colors I was seeing out my window. I included the tulips, redbud tree, plum tree and dogwood tree in my yard since I was working on this piece while they were in bloom. Sometimes I like to spend more time on the decorative parts of a piece than on the lettering and that was certainly the case here. To achieve the rich, detailed look of this border, I sketched and refined the design on gridded paper, transferred the design in pencil to a piece of handmade paper using a light table, traced over all the pencil with India ink in a technical pen, laid the gold leaf, painted in each colored section with gouache, shaded the white vines with a hard lead colored pencil, added the white and gold dots over each colored field with a stylus, and then went over all the outlines again with the technical pen. Lots of steps mean lots of time but I enjoy getting lost in the execution of a piece like this once I have done the design/layout work.

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Giclée print, 12×18” and digital print, 5×7” cards

Open edition


Original is 10×14”

India ink, gouache, watercolor, Gansi white, shell gold, gold leaf (on Instacoll) and Prismacolor Verithin pencil on handmade Twinrocker paper; mounted on Canson Mi-Teintes paper

The text is from the hymn There is Sunshine in My Soul Today by Eliza E. Hewitt.


There is springtime in my soul today,

For when the Lord is near,

The dove of peace sings in my heart,

The flowers of grace appear.


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