For the month of March, our works are being curated by the incomparable Shann Ray, author of The American Masculine. Shann has brought together three authors and one photographer to explore the theme of Light and Darkness from the perspective of Isaiah 61:3:

and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
instead of ashes,
the oil of joy
instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting of the Lord
for the display of his splendor.


This first week comes to us from photographer Vanessa Kay.


 click image to zoom
Vanessa Kay, Garment of Praise, 2013, 10″ x 14″, digital print


From the Artist: 

A spirit of despair is a thick darkness of lost hope. Many in our society and many in our world struggle with despair that haunts us from the past or worries us about the future. The only thing that can overcome despair is a God-given Spirit of Praise. This spirit of praise, the ability to have joy when it is not apparent in life and to have hope when proof of hope is hard to see, this is the strength needed to overcome despair.

This photo depicts the darkness of despair with the light of hope shining and defining the outline of the face. It incorporates a couple images of fabric: one is seen as orange tones showing motion of light, and the other is my mother’s wedding veil creating a faint flower and texture. Both fabrics are representations of garments of praise. Speaking praise to God changes our outlook and makes even dark places beautiful. A change of our focus and attitude, not looking at our despair but looking to the Lord and his promises for us, can bring a breakthrough of hope that lifts us above.





Vanessa Kay loves photographing people in their environment, getting their personality and character in an image. Photojournalism portraiture is her style for family and wedding photography, but her true love is travel and documentary. She has photographed in India, Cambodia, Thailand, Netherlands, Bulgaria, and others countries. Currently she is focusing on family and HS senior shoots, and she plans to travel again soon!



Image is copyrighted by the artist and used here by permission.

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