Artist bio

Ashleigh is a Barbadian visual artist, residing on the beautiful Caribbean Island of her birth, Barbados. She holds an Associate Degree in Visual Arts, from the Barbados Community College. Specialising in fine art and illustration, she works primarily with watercolour, ink, and gouache. Her work is centred around the female form and nature, as she explores themes of emotion, faith, dreams, and stories wrapped in the passage of time, that seek to express the more vulnerable, and often deeply hidden aspects of ourselves.





Artist Statement

Two years ago, after surrendering my life to the Lord, I realised that my artwork neither honoured, nor aligned with Christ. It had become majorly influenced by a lot of the darkness I had been exposed to, and that had begun to fester inside me. Consequently, a conflict arose within me that led me to put a pause on creating anything for the duration of about a year. During that period, I sought to understand what it meant to create for God. Sure, I was always inspired by His creation, but “What does it mean to be inspired by HIM?”, I found myself pondering.
This painting, birthed from a place of surrender, embodies the peace and tranquillity I found while seeking God. I sought His presence daily in scripture and prayer, and with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, I learned to truly put my trust and faith in Him. It is the outcome of the battle during that season, and a testimony of the verse, ‘Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.’ (Isaiah 26:3). It signifies a sense of security only found in the embrace of our Heavenly Father.
As I am enthralled with Nihonga, traditional Japanese painting, but have no access to the materials typically used, I sought to echo the techniques and process instead. I felt enticed to dive deeper into my creative process, implementing methods that diversify my use of media, especially one being vastly different to the mineral pigments used in Nihonga. Rather than instinctively going with watercolour on paper, I opted for the barely touched acrylic inks sitting on my shelf. I achieved an unexpected translucency, as the acrylic base of the ink built light, jewel-like layers, which allowed the grain of the wood to remain visible. The process was quite healing, it was all new to me; and I find such joy in being led by the Holy Spirit in creation.

How it fits into contest

I entered 2020 already gripped by fear, anxiety, and a deep spiritual unsettling. Then, the pandemic unfolded and with it came many more painful challenges and events. I felt myself spiralling as one thing after another fell apart.
Sitting on my bed one day, in despair and desperation, I rededicated my life to the Lord and began my walk with Christ. I continued to struggle mentally and spiritually; however, by talking to God daily and seeking solace in His Word, I slowly learned to put my trust and faith in the Almighty. Throughout repeated heartaches and crises, I kept relinquishing it all to God, allowing the Holy Spirit to teach and guide me.
Transitioning into 2021, God began to reveal to me His promises and who I truly am in His eyes and His heart. I began to discover a peace like nothing I have ever felt. And when both of my grandparents passed on the same day that October, His peace cloaked me, keeping my heart anchored in Christ amidst that devastation. That was when I truly realised what God was doing for, and in me.
Only through seeking God daily and feeding my soul with His Word, was I able to receive this blessing of strength and comfort. I believe that this is the most assured way to equip ourselves with the spiritual armour of God. Let His Word strengthen and embolden you. Let it renew your mind and transform your heart. Rest in God and let Him have it ALL.


The Almighty Creator

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If you are interested in any artwork like this piece please feel free to contact me via email.

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