Encouraged by her artist mother, she occasionally won drawing
competitions for young people. She wished to paint, but supplies were
difficult to find during her teenage years in the 1930s.In 1949, alone
with a young family in a remote logging camp, she began to paint
greeting cards in watercolours, and then to use oil paints and pastels
received as gifts. She received her first commission of three compatible
watercolours there, then in 1952, she won first prize in Duncan for an oil painting reproduction
By 1958, she was a serious artist, had joined The Crofton Art Group, painting in oils weekly with Arnold Burrel and other well-known artists, and was showing regularly. She then took an 18-month art course with Jack Wilkingson, then of Victoria. The class finished in the instructor's studio.In the '70s, she participated in a month of daily art classes and chose to work in batik.
By 1975, now able to pass on her art expertise, Ruth taught two day workshops for 12 students. Her work sold well and, combined with her teaching earnings, she was able to enrol in the University of Victoria's Fine Arts program during 1979-80, taking second- and third-year drawing, painting, printmaking, and poetry.
Her artwork hangs in homes, offices, and
collections in Canada, USA, New Zealand. She has created special
calendar art and museum backdrops, and has participated in
numerous shows, in Comox at the Pearl Ellis Gallery and the Filberg Park
and Lodge, as well as in Cowichan and Nanaimo.
Ruth loves to express her love of her environment, but has not restricted herself to any particular subject or style, although she enjoys the realist style. She is proficient in a variety of mediums, including oil, acrylic, soft pastel, ink, watercolour, batik, charcoal and pencil. She has also made collages from tissue/masa paper and seashells.
Before God made man, he made a beautiful world for him to live in, and we see that beautiful world around us on a beautiful day off the coast of southern California. Jim saw a lot of God’s beautiful world in his life. He grew up in the beautiful green hills of Yorkshire, and he loved to recall his bike rides—once even down to the North Sea. He lived on three continents (in England, Iceland, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and the US).
God didn’t put man just anywhere in the beautiful world but in a garden where he would work as a gardener. Anyone who’s been to Jim and Teresa’s house knows that they are gardeners. You can see the care they’ve taken to make their plot of earth beautiful. They decorated their house inside and out, and especially at Halloween, Christmas, and Easter they put up a lot of extra decorations to make the neighborhood a nicer place to live.
But the beautiful garden wasn’t enough. God saw that it wasn’t good for man to be alone. He brought animals for man to name. I got to see the special relationship Jim had with animals when I saw how he loved his little dog, Abbie, and Abbie loved him.
But animals weren’t enough. God made man a companion who was exactly right for him. God gave Adam Eve, and he gave Jim Teresa. Anyone who saw Jim and Teresa together could see at once that in a special way they were made for one another. They were married for almost fifty years. We know that marriage is a gift from God, but in these days it’s worth pointing out that when a couple stays together as long as they both live, that’s a gift that they give to their family and to their community.
But God would not let death have the final word. He sent his son to die for us, to deal with the sin that alienated us from God. Jesus was willing to make the great sacrifice it would take to defeat evil and gain back the life and liberty God intended for us. The Bible says that “God so loved that world that he gave his only begotten son so that whoever believes in him will not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). Through Jesus our sins can be forgiven and we can be reconciled with God and have access to eternal life.
God’s plan is not just that our spirits would live on after death. He promises to resurrect the bodies of those who believe in his son. Jesus said, “This is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him should have eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day” (John 6:40). When we see a body reduced to ashes and dust, it seems hard to believe that one could be raised up again. But it’s only reasonable to believe that if God made man out of dust to begin with, he could do it again.
When we remember Jim and his life, we are reminded of the remarkable power and goodness of God in creating him, breathing life into him, and pouring gifts into his life. When we remember his death, we are reminded that we have sinned and that will die as well and return to dust.
But when we remember Jesus and his death, we are reminded that our sins can be forgiven. When remember his resurrection, we are reminded that our only hope is that God who created us in the first place would re-create us, breathe life into us, and allow us to share in his eternal life.
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