"The Flower Garden"

"The Flower Garden" Original Oil Painting by Samantha Long

About the Painting

This painting was done as part of Certain Women's 2019 Group Show whose theme was "Reflections on a Mother in Heaven." Here is what I wrote about my painting for the show:

When I first heard our theme, ‘Reflections on a Mother in Heaven,’ I was dismayed. I believed God Himself barely mentions our Mother, and we should follow suit and leave Her be. I had never painted Deity, and I wanted to keep it that way. 
 
After some extensive research, however, I realize that my initial thoughts had more to do with my preconceptions and had little basis in scripture or revelation. I learned that ‘Elohim,’ being plural for the highest God, implies that His very scriptural title refers to both a Heavenly Father and Mother. I read an account of Joseph Smith having a vision of God the Father with Jesus and Heavenly Mother. (I also read that a particular apostle considered the “feminine element” to be lesser in power and glory than “the masculine,” but that’s beside the point.)
 
I chose to focus on why Heavenly Mother became absent. Until Adam and Even left the Garden of Eden, it was likely that they had conversed not only with their Father, but with their Mother as well. As they were cast out, I contemplated what it would have been like for our Heavenly Parents, knowing that the children of time would no longer remember Them. It must have been particularly poignant for our Mother in Heaven, who knew that not only would Adam and Eve forget Her, over the generations Adam’s posterity would forget that She even existed. Nevertheless Heavenly Mother had such faith in the Plan of Salvation that She allowed Her very memory to be erased to allow us to learn and grow.
 
Through this project, I learned that not only does She exist, it is appropriate to strive to know Her. It is now clear to me that our Heavenly Mother plays an active role in our lives and is just as concerned for our welfare as our Heavenly Father and our Savior.