Artist Patti Bradeis creates heartfelt portraits that touch the lives of her clients. We spoke with her recently about her work.
ABI: Please share the concept and message behind your portraiture.
PB: In February, 2011, with a prayer and a sharpened pencil I endeavored to draw a photograph of my 2-year-old granddaughter with her arms reaching high and her head thrown back with her whole being gushing giggles. Her emotion mirrored my soul’s posture of praise and gratitude to our Lord.
So began my quest to draw individual stories without words that reflect wisdom, guidance, encouragement, comfort, discipline, justice, joy, and love that I glean from the Word. I couple each portrait with a Biblical verse that is the essence of what the drawing speaks to me personally.
ABI: Where do you get inspiration and what would you like to impart to others?
PB: Regardless of the season of life through which I have journeyed, my Dad has always reminded me “the sun will still come up tomorrow.” While these are simple words, they have always proven to be true. Even when gloomy clouds prevent me from feeling the warmth of the sun or prohibits its light from illuminating my path, the sun IS still present!
Every day of life is an opportunity to transition from mourning to dancing, from sowing to reaping, from hatred to love, from anxiety to peace, from tears to laughter, from selfishness to serving others, from shame to pride, from suffering to joy, from insecurity to confidence, from physical, emotional and spiritual depletion to strong, abundant health. Through my work I hope you receive a glimmer of hope, a spark of humor, a wisp of encouragement or an inspired breath of perseverance to add to your day.
ABI: What is the response you have received?
The most memorable response I observed was of a woman who stood silently crying in front of the portrait entitled “Angst.” It depicts a child whose face is contorted with anxiety. This tenderhearted woman revealed to me that the child represented her own life filled with anxiety. she said the scripture that accompanied the portrait resonated deeply with her heart.
Another reaction came from a seasoned firefighter who began unashamedly to weep as he turned the pages of my portfolio. It literally was indescribable to witness such raw, uninhibited emotion. A spontaneous reaction of a father seeing his daughter’s memorial portrait by proclaiming “She has life in her eyes again!” which sparked a sense of participating in a healing moment in his grief.
There have been times I’ve overheard (or, “eavesdropped” if you will) on people’s remarks as they view my art. One piece especially, entitled “Two Tu’s” is of two little girls holding hands gazing at the ocean. This scene ignites a lot of “remember when….” followed by childhood beach memories and friendships new and old. It is a print that resides in both homes of dear friends.