Painting helped heal artist Tracie Loux and bring her spiritual powers to light.

Tracie Loux, an elementary art teacher in Kansas City, Missouri, watercolor artist, and Unity metaphysical student, is drawn to helping others heal through visual arts.

What began as a creative and contemplative practice to study a classic Unity tool as part of her own healing process has led to a set of 12 watercolor portraits, and an inspirational card deck and wall calendar, that have brought the 12 powers to life for a new audience.

Tracie Loux, Kansas City artist, Rise Into Your Power artwork, 12 powers artwork

Contemplating the 12 Powers

When we think of spiritual tools, we often think of practices or objects outside of us, such as writing in a journal or using prayer beads. The 12 powers are tools we continuously have available inside of us.

Unity cofounder Charles Fillmore wrote about these 12 spiritual gifts that are inherent in each of us more than a century ago. He saw them as abilities that are simply waiting to be awakened in order to strengthen our souls and lead a more richly blessed life. They offer a system for building a spiritual foundation that can support our fullest potential.

How we think of these spiritual powers may have changed throughout the past 100 years, but their essential nature remains the same.

The 12 powers—faith, strength, wisdom, love, power, imagination, understanding, will, order, zeal, release, and life itself—can help us develop our spiritual capacities and recognize the Divine within each of us.

But when we look at each of the 12 powers, what do we see?

Healing Through a Visual, Meditative Practice

Loux was taking metaphysics courses from Unity Worldwide Ministries’ Spiritual Education and Enrichment (SEE) program ... when she became interested in taking a deeper look at the 12 powers. One of her instructors proposed an independent study project to help Loux explore them in a creative way, suggesting that she illustrate each of the powers.

Together they came up with the idea to use the artwork as a new way for others to experience the powers through a calendar and inspiration card deck.

“Painting is a meditative process for me,” Loux says. “It’s a place to step away from the stress of my life and to experience healing.”

Tracie Loux, Kansas City artist, Rise Into Your Power artwork, 12 powers artwork

A visual learner herself, Loux hopes people will be able to see themselves in these images and that the art will help them explore this traditional Unity tool in a new way. She says the painting process created a visual, meditative practice that offered a connection to the powers she wouldn’t have found with traditional, eyes-closed, silent meditation.

When Loux began studying the 12 powers, she had recently gone through a very difficult period of hurt and pain after the death of her son. The exploration of the powers prompted a creative and spiritual renewal. Her study started with thumbnail sketches to go with a series of affirmations she wrote to help connect with the powers as part of her own healing journey.

The thumbnails led to a Pinterest board of diverse faces she was drawn to, which led to full paintings, and then a completed set of 12 portraits throughout a period of about a year and a half. She incorporated the color and part of the body associated with each power, then added them to the month she found meaningful.

Open, Fluid, and Diverse

Loux used these correlations to develop the form, expression, and color for each image, with an eye toward creating a diverse but cohesive series. She wanted the images to feel open and fluid—just like the powers.

“My mind was blown,” said Rev. Jacquie Fernández of the final artwork. Fernández was the multimedia director at Unity World Headquarters at the time when the card deck and calendar were created and published using Loux’s images.

Fernández had seen early sketches of the imagery and said it was mesmerizing, magical even, to witness Loux’s contemplative process for bringing these complex concepts to life. “It’s challenging to represent the 12 powers visually, but her instincts were spot-on,” Fernández said. “These are heady concepts, and Tracie has made them accessible to a wider audience.”

“Painting is a meditative process for me. It’s a place to step away from the stress of my life and to experience healing.”

While the affirmations for the card deck where written by the Unity publications team, Loux had a more complete hand with the language of the calendar.

“Not only is Tracie a brilliant artist, but she can write! The affirmations used for each month on the calendar are hers, and they are as meaningful and touching as anything I’ve seen about the 12 powers."

Rev. Ellen Debenport

The artwork for the Rise Into Your Power card deck and calendar introduces the 12 powers to a new generation while helping even longtime ministers like Fernández and Debenport engage with them in a new way.

“I’m really proud of this body of work,” Loux says. “It’s my hope that, as people meditate on these paintings, they’ll be able to access their own powers.”

Artist Tracie Loux talks more about her artwork, her family, and her healing journey after the transition of her son Mattie, on her website, The Healing Breath.

Or watch the video on her artistic process of creating Rise Into Your Power.

About the Author

Mallory Herrmann is a writer and editor in the Kansas City area. Her work has been featured in Unity MagazineCareer College Central, and the Lee’s Summit Tribune.


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