Two Cardinal Paintings Fresh Off the Easel

Two acrylic paintings of cardinals on cradled panels

I needed today to be a productive day.  I needed to feel accomplishment and be distracted. And what a better way to distract yourself than to paint two cardinal paintings!  These birds are truly stunning.

That incredible shock of red

The sight of a male cardinal on a winters day will literally take your breath away especially when seen against a snowy background or on a grey cloudy day.  They are magnificent.  Unprecedented beauty.  They are a symbol of hope and renewal.  Strength. Grace.  

Happy to See You - Painting of a cardinal by Helen SHideler


Some believe cardinals are messenger.  Visitors. They show up when you are celebrating or missing someone you love.  For me, today was a two cardinal kind of day!

Sweet Memories cardinal painting by Helen Shideler

Some days you need to be retrospective

And it is certainly one of those days for me. Today is an anniversary that has a profound impact on me. Every year from a certain Monday in March to April 3rd i find I am fighting back tears.  I manage through it.  Try not to give in to it.  This year I decided to handle it differently - to celebrate and embrace it in a spiritual way.  

Cardinals are often thought to be symbolic of a loved one who has passed.   I decided that today I would embrace the day. Not fight it. Not try to ignore it.  You see today is the anniversary of the passing of my son.  Dear sweet Andrew Justin Hill.  And how much I miss him.  This is so very much a huge piece of who I am.  Today I decided to face the day head on. Painting birds that evoke sweet memories for us and for so many.  And they were my mothers favourite bird and are loved by our family.