Jesus was a master storyteller. He frequently used stories to
convey important, and sometimes complex, ideas in a way that the
listeners could understand. Stories can help make timeless principles
more understandable to modern listeners. What happens if you pair
storytelling with the universal language of art? You get God's
Runaway: Story & Art Lessons! DVD ($14.99), which uses
art in various formats to tell the story of Jonah. The centerpiece
of the video is something akin to a narrated book, with beautiful
chalk drawings and some special effects to bring the book to life.
It is interspersed with video footage of artist Gloria Kohlmann
drawing a large black-light interpretation of the scene where Jonah
has just been spit out of the whale and faces Nineveh. It's a very
intriguing and captivating way to show the story of Jonah.
The video includes three different, but related, art lessons (with
artists Heidi Shorts, Pat Knepley, and Jim Pence) that teach kids
and adults how to use chalk art to create fairly simple but charming
pictures from the story. There are also some nice bonus features,
including a captivating presentation of the gospel message and
lovely original music performed by "Breathing Room" recording artists
Jan Roper and Kevin Dukes, which is performed while watching Gloria
Kohlmann create her lovely drawing.
My family enjoyed watching the various features of God's Runaway .
Using music and art to accentuate the retelling of an important
Bible story helped convey the message in an engaging manner. It
was inspiring to watch the artists at work, especially the "surprises" they
built into their paintings that were revealed under black light.
We enjoyed the art lessons, which were simple enough for beginners
but also contained some good inspiration for more experienced artists.
With no expertise at all in drawing (my stick figures aren't bad,
but anything over that is unrecognizable!), I was even able to
draw a fair representation of a whale! God's Runaway does
an excellent job of utilizing art in action to tell a wonderful
story of obedience in a way that kids and adults will find compelling