Friday, May 25, 2012

GIVEAWAY ~ Mary Jane Q Cross ~

Today I bring you a giveaway from Mary Jane Q Cross.

Mary Jane is not only a talented artist, but a wonderful friend of mine. Growing up in rural New Hampshire, Mary Jane lived nearby and was a mentor to me and has placed many good memories in my life. Her prints grace my home and many of my guests cannot believe that they are the product of fingerpainting. In Mary Jane's own words:

I am a painter of beautiful women, not just on the outside but the beauty of who we are as women in our spirit as well. It is not a surface and cheap beauty but one of depth, respect and elegance, I am still, as an artist, painting the woman I long to grow into.

You can find Mary Jane online at: (landscapes)

Beloved Hope ~

Missy: How long have you been painting?
Mary Jane: How long I have been an artist is fun because I have known I was a creative personality since a very young child (I loved finger painting at 6 years of age). Even though I did not know the word artist was attached to it until I was around 11, at age 8 I did know I was drawn to beauty in so many areas. I also knew to have beauty around me, I would likely have to make it. I am happily still doing so.

Missy: What are you most excited about right now? 
Mary Jane: Right now as of 2011 in July I have had the honor of being designated an Associate Living Master by The Art Renewal Center, the largest online museum in the world. With 6 to 7000 of the past dead masters represented there were only 65 designated living Master’s as of July. Of this 65 only 9 of us were women. This site has 20 million visitors every 4 to 6 weeks. The Renaissance of the Classical Realism movement is gaining rapidly. I have seen it coming and waiting for it while I have worked quietly against the tide of expressionism and modernity, to finally see what I had longed to create in paintings as a young girl. I am excited about having an appreciative audience in the ARC for the Allegorical, and Biblical subjects so wonderfully received. It is my great honor to be a part of this respectful group. (Mary Jane's Gallery Page)

~ Tranquil Companion ~ 

Missy: What is a rewarding part of your work?
Mary Jane: Story telling in paint is a natural for me and having something worth while to say as an artist, in artwork that will hopefully be around for 200 years, that is applicable emotionally and spiritually to today and not just gratuitous beauty, is a particularly rewarding part of my work. It has been building steadily for nearly 40 years.

Missy: Where has your work been exhibited? 
Mary Jane: My work has been exhibited in the Oil Painters of America International Competitions winning awards in Allied Artists of America, Academic Artists, and the American Artists Professional League. Recently it has been recognized in the 2011 ARC Salon Exhibition. My work is also accompanied by Poetry that God has graced me with. My book, "Poems of a Painter, Paintings of a Prayer," is in it’s second printing. Most of the poems are prayers. Below is the painting Breath of Heaven with it's accompanying poem.

Breath Of Heaven

A soft warm current, that I may touch
Air on my skin is speaking much
A small wind, a sacrament, Thy Breath bestows
Rippling through fingers, my hand doth close

Holding fast in a moment of knowing
Invites me through, to where I am going
This draft, a benediction, to receive thy favor
This moment, this morning, my soul doth savor

My guided path You gently lay down
Wind swirling this day, to turn me around
Your Presence in the top, of the balsam trees
Divine’s the trail, as I sink to my knees

Showing me always to where You are
I know I am small, and the journey far
But You draw us this life, to walk, to say
Igniting, awakening, tracking the way

Thy Spirit, Thy sacrament at our fingertips
Ear to Heaven, Thy Name on our lips
The homing beacon You sow in Your own
On the Breath of breeze, winging us home

Mary Jane Q Cross, Copyright 2010

Missy: What has been challenging in your work? 
Mary Jane: The detours along the way have had a way of refining my own spirit and talents in ways I never could have foreseen. I took a popular medication for only 19 days in 1993. The side affect was a pronounced and permanent right sided tremor, leaving me with difficulty with motor skills and the ability to continue my art work with brushes.  It took 5 ½ years to relearn skills to use tools and then to paint with my fingers. So all of the art work you see is 95 to 98% fingerpainting. The 2 to 5% that is with a brush is with prosthetic devices that I have invented.  My work is different in that before it was classical and perhaps a bit academic and cold. Now it is much more filled with pathos and emotion as never before because I am aware how easy it is to loose what may be taken for granted. As a Painter I am a Romantic idealist, always finding the ideal and unique beauty in my subjects. My hope is that when you see my work, that you might be encouraged to cope with what you cannot change.

Missy: What type of paint do you use? 
Mary Jane:  I work with the new generation of water miscible oils that clean up with soap and water.

Missy: Do you have a favorite inspirational quote?
Mary Jane: “There is a contentment in doing what I am born to do, what God fashioned me for, I am not thankful for affliction, but I am very thankful in it, God has brought forth more than I ever could have imagined.”

Prints of Mary Jane's work are for sale through her websites.
Contact her for exchanging credit info and local pickup. --

Prints are $80 (plus $6 shipping). They are matted to 16x20 standard sized.

Framed Prints are $170 plus shipping.

The Book "Poems of a Painter, Paintings of a Prayer" is $50.00 (plus $6 shipping).

"Poems of a Painter, Paintings of a Prayer"
37 paintings, 47 poems, and 9 essays

For today's giveaway Mary Jane is generously offering the following print:

~ The Contemplative ~

In addition, Mary Jane is offering all readers 10% off all PRINTS for the month of June. Mention this blog post when contacting Mary Jane.  

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Thank you to Mary Jane Q Cross!

To enter, please leave a comment in today's post. Comments will close Sunday, June 3 at 5pm. The winner will be chosen by a random number generator and announced here in this post Monday. Please make sure you leave a link back to your website, email or another way to contact you in your comment.

 Comments Closed! The winner is...
I really enjoyed this interview. I would be interested to know where Mary Jane studied art or if she is self-taught, and if she uses live models or photos... I'm really inspired!
Posted by: Laurel Sprenger

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  1. Mary Jane's work is so beautiful. Like the artist, herself.

  2. wow thank you for sharing

  3. Hi Missy,

    I really enjoyed this interview. I would be interested to know where Mary Jane studied art or if she is self-taught, and if she uses live models or photos... I'm really inspired!

    Hope you and Ben and the little ones are doing well. Wish we could come see you all in Michigan this summer - thinking about next summer, since we are going to Canada this year...



    1. Hi Laurel,
      Mary Jane studied at the Worcester Art Museum School (more info on her ARC page: She does photo shoots of her model and then works mainly from the photos, but then brings the models back into the studio for more detail work. I hope I'm right on that - that is what I remember from being a model in my teens.

  4. I am blessed to look at her work when I visit my mom's home :) Maybe I will win and have one of my own. Thanks for interviewing her.

  5. I have loved Mary Jane's work since I first saw it when I was young. I especially love her painting of the woman washing the feet of Jesus. This scene has grown in meaning to me over he years and her depiction of it captures the depth of the scene beautifully.
    Thank you to both of you for sharing this interview and art. :)

  6. The paintings are so beautiful and evocative. The poem "Breath of Heaven" really spoke to me, as did her favorite quote...this gave me a wonderful start to the day. Thank you for introducing me to a special woman.

  7. wow, these are really beautiful paintings. She has amazing talent.

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