I am enthralled by art. All different forms of creative expression intrigue me as I am a firm believer that we are all creative beings, made in the image of our Creator. If he’s creative, we’re creative.
Even when we think we aren’t.
In Change of Heart, I knew I wanted to create a character who was inherently creative, but who had maybe forgotten how important that part of her life really was. See, I don’t think we often give ourselves permission to be creative. We think it’s silly or frivolous, when really it’s important and valid.
When I’m writing, I find myself hugely inspired by the world around me. The wooden hearts my artist, Evelyn, has to re-imagine, were inspired by the real life wooden hearts in Loveland, Colorado (That link will give you a little history of this super sweet tradition).
The hearts really are so unique, and they add this great pop of color to the winter landscape. Here’s an image of Lake Loveland with the hearts in the foreground. I drove this road back and forth to our kids’ school every day we lived there.
The lamp post hearts grew out of the Valentine re-mailing program, and it seemed like the perfect inspiration for a romance novel. I mean…can you imagine the stories?
Just a few words painted on a wooden heart and hung on a lamp post (or written on a scratch of paper and slipped in to a lunch box) can say so much…
Not to mention the painting parties… if we still lived there, I would definitely want to be a part of this:
But, as you can imagine, I wanted to take my hearts in a unique direction of their own, so I started dreaming up a new kind of wooden heart. (Plus, getting my artist, Evelyn to work closely with my woodworker, Trevor was a must for the story… and this seemed like the perfect solution.)
Some of the images I loved the most were a combination of rustic, like this:
Or maybe something like this, with the wooden slats at more of a diagonal:
Via AlmaBoheme Etsy
Or maybe something a tiny bit whimsical, like these adorable reclaimed wood hearts from Olivewood Design:
The other element Evelyn would’ve added would’ve been gorgeous hand-lettering. The messages the people of Loves Park wanted to put on display would’ve been hand-painted in a font I imagine something like this:
Via UnikaCollections Etsy
Isn’t that gorgeous?
There’s something sort of wonderful about putting love on display like this. During February, it would be awfully difficult to see these hearts on the lamp posts and not think of the 25 words you would paint for the person you love.
Which is so very important in a world that can sometimes seem a little too dark and filled with hate.
I’d say we’re all awfully lucky we don’t have to wait for Valentine’s Day to conjure up words like these…
How would you like to WIN a copy of Change of Heart AND a $50 bookstore gift card?! Simply visit my publisher’s Facebook Page (like it if you haven’t just because it’s awesome) and leave a comment! Easy as lemon meringue! You’ve got until May 9th to enter!