Happy New Year

Here I am looking at the prospects of a new year and wondering how things are going to play out.  I used to paint furiously as many landscapes as I could to sell in the art galleries I have around the country.  My art was soft and simple, but it was satisfying to create because it reflected who I am as a person.  Now, I have slowed down to painting only several more complex paintings a year and the work still reflects who I am as a person, but on a much deeper level…and it is very satisfying.

This New Year will bring the release of three important new paintings I have had on the drawing board for a couple of years now.  Each is a completely unique concept that will cause people to think and feel something perhaps they haven’t felt before.

The purpose of my art is to testify of Christ, to embolden Americans to preserve their freedoms and to uphold the sanctity of our families. 

May your new year be blessed with love and courage in defense of God, family and country.

Happy New Year,
Jon McNaughton


You Cannot Be Silent

I was in my gallery on Saturday to try to give an extra hand because of all the Christmas shoppers.  We have a large six foot wide framed print of “The Forgotten Man” in the front of the store.  I like to sometimes watch people’s reaction as they see the painting for the first time. Regardless of who they are, they usually are taken back that somebody actually painted this image.  It is interesting to see how people fall into one of three categories:  They begin to nod their heads in agreement as they begin to decipher the painting.  Or they have a pained look on their face and walk away sometimes shouting out a few expletives.  Or they look at it and seem to say, “What does it mean?”

 Click on image to view interactive webpage

One man asked me, “Why do you have Obama standing on the Constitution?”  I responded, “Because I believe he has acted unconstitutionally since being in office.  After he pushed through the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) last March I felt I had to paint this picture.”  He then said to me, “Give the poor man a chance, he’s only been in office two years!!”

I couldn’t believe what I was hearing.  Give him a chance?  Obama has made it clear by his actions his regard for the Constitution.  On my website I listed the things he has done that I believe are unconstitutional.  Even the federal court in Virginia recently found Obamacare to be unconstitutional.  It will undoubtedly go to the Supreme Court by next year.

I also heard another person ask me, “What are the presidents looking at who are applauding?”  I responded that they are gazing out at their own vision of what they want America to become and they are looking away from the forgotten man.  I believe the uncontrollable spending and expensive welfare state we have will eventually lead to an economic collapse.

These are sobering thoughts and this painting is certainly divisive and disturbing to some people.  I knew it would be so when I painted it.  I want people to ask questions like the ones I stated above.  Our country is at a tipping point and we need to get up off our bench and do something!  When you show this image to others ask them to try to decipher what it means.  Have them go to the interactive website and read the history of what our presidents have done and what Obama has done.  Now is not the time to do nothing.  We cannot be silent.


Sitting on the Fence

I remember when I used to paint only soft and quiet landscapes.  Life was simple then.  I don’t do as many of those kinds of paintings anymore.  Today my time is spent researching and preparing epic size works that are more provocative in their message and statement.  I want to take a stand on issues that effect people.  I’m not concerned with political correctness.  As an artist, I need to be true to my heart.  My paintings are often divisive and I have been criticized for being such.  I think we are at a time when we cannot afford to not take a stand.  Our world is changing, and I’m not sure I like which direction this change is taking us.  I hope that people will ponder the message of these paintings and take the time to read what I have written about them. 

Currently I have at least twelve major paintings of the magnitude of “The Forgotten Man” and “One Nation Under God” which I plan to work on consecutively.  I want to stir the patriotic spirit of Americans and open the eyes of Christians and the importance of taking a stand wherever we are.

My new painting that I plan to release at the end of January will be my most important Christian painting.  The title will be “Via Dolorosa” which are the Latin words for “way of suffering.”  The painting will include over 100 figures from history which have either persecuted or defended Christianity.  The central figure represents the modern Christian which has to make a choice.  Will he stand up for what he believes, or will he remain silent? Too much is at stake to remain neutral.   I believe this will be the most comprehensive Christian painting ever created and with God’s help it will stir the souls of those are sitting on the fence.


You Must be a Racist

In the short two months since I released my new painting, “The Forgotten Man” it has received both praise and condemnation.  Usually when someone is upset with the painting it is because they believe Obama is above reproach or that I don’t place an equal share of blame on previous presidents.  Recently I had an angry fan on my Facebook write me a letter regarding my painting, “The Forgotten Man.”  Here is what he said:


I have always been a fan of your work but I just have to say the Forgotten Man really let me down. I think it's a racist painting and very disrespectful to any one who stands for change.....



I was dumb founded by his comment.  Why would anyone find the painting racist?  After the crushing debt that President Bush left us in 2008 I was hoping for some “change”, but not the kind Obama wants to give us.  Am I disrespectful for standing against a president who I believe is not keeping his oath of office to “protect and defend the Constitution of the United States?”  After reading his comment I assumed, well maybe he just didn’t get the painting, perhaps if he read my artist interpretations on my website he would see the truth.  I told him he needed to go to my website and do some research before he assumes that I am a racist.  Here was his response:


Yes I have done my research on YOUR site and read all of your EXPLANATIONS...of course you're going to say that this painting is NOT racist! Who actually would say that? You know as well as me the fallout you would have if you had stated that! As a NON WHITE person looking at your painting I find it very offensive and many others would agree....

If this is a non partisan painting why do you have Democrat presidents standing next to Obama and clapping but you have Reagan standing next to the man on the bench like he's trying to protect him? It just goes to show that white people still have a bad taste in their mouth due to Obama being elected and they'll go to ANY lengths into trying to bring him down.

After reading this I thought, Did he not see that I had BUSH standing right next to Obama?  Did he not read my criticisms of some of the Republican Presidents?  This is not a partisan painting.  It was clearly evident that he did not read the explanations and could not see past his own hate and prejudice.  There is not a single racist comment in any of my writing as I explained the meaning behind the painting.  Then he went on to say:

Hopefully you can paint that picture I suggested about George Bush stepping on New Orleans with a big grin on his face and have black people crying looking up at him....let's see what kind of feedback you'd get from white people......that's not being racist is it? You're just painting the truth....right??

This man really sees it as white people against black people.  And he calls me racist?  If I were to agree with his way of thinking I would be prevented from ever criticizing a public leader based on the color of his skin.  We would all be shackled by political correctness and forced to comply because “change” is good. (Regardless of what kind of change it is.)

I hope my painting will cause people to really think and to get up off their bench to defend the Constitution…regardless of the color of their skin.


Path of Peace

Each of us has times in our lives when we feel lost or discouraged. I believe that all of us have a guardian angel. The question is… are we listening? If we have the courage to cross the bridge of faith and follow our guardian, we will find ourselves being led down what I call the path of peace.

 Click image to view larger

There have been many times in my life when I have come to a crossroads and I had to make a choice.  The decision would possibly change the course of my whole life.  In my youth I made a choice to become an artist.  Even though I felt opposition from many people on the grounds of whether I could support a family, I knew this was the right avenue for me…I just felt it. 

When I met my wife there was something about her, like a breath of fresh air.  She was so easy to love.  All I wanted to do was take care of her and adore her for the rest of my life.  I knew we would get married…I just felt it.

A short time after I was married I was on a trip to Arizona to visit my grandparents.  As I sat by myself in a room reading I was suddenly startled by the unseen presence of someone who began to rebuke me for not living my life as I should.  I had not been praying or thinking of others and frankly, taking a path that would lead me away from a peaceful life.  I knew I needed to make God first…I just felt it.

After I graduated from college I was finding myself looking for employment.  I wanted to make my living as an artist, but I didn’t know how.  When I prayed for guidance the Lord told me to be patient.  I remember saying, “Lord, I don’t know why I was born with this desire to paint, but if thou wilt, some day let me use my gift to serve thee.”  I knew my prayer would be answered…I just felt it.

For many years I had to do other work to support my family.  Times were hard.  Life is full of lessons to help us grow.  My beautiful wife gave me eight children.  Some have had disabilities.  But in great challenges have come great blessings.  I felt I was led down a path of peace.  I knew God was always there…I just felt it.

When the time was right the Lord gave me the direction to do my art full time.  As I began to paint scenes from Christ’s life I felt inadequate.  I felt the Adversary trying to discourage me.  But the Lord has brought people into my life to help me do this work.  I know God loves all of His children and desires to bless us and help us find the “Path of Peace.”  As you look back on your life you may have felt the guiding hand of a guardian angel as the Lord has manifested Himself in your times of indecision.  Don’t expect a lightning bolt or glorious manifestation.  Like a whisper…you just feel it.