Art creates many benefits to the soul as both a painter and a viewer.
Since 1999 when I took up art seriously, this was when I fell ill with stress related issues, I like many others before me, found that the creation of art has a strange soothing effect upon the soul.
Moreover the enjoyment of viewing art has a similar affect which has been noted, particularly the Old Testament where the artisans were involved such as the making of the tent of the Tabernacle.
Initially, I sought to interpret verses of Scripture through art and as such it created not a little interest to the point where Mr Basil Sellers AM financed an art centre at Australia's Bush Orchestra, our tourism ministry in Moruya, on the NSW south coast which he opened in 2003.
The other side of the 10 acre allotment near the beach was Basil Sellers House where the Australian Institute of Sport athletes enjoyed respite – they became regular visitors to the Basil Sellers Art Centre. I would often utilise a painting as a prop when speaking to these elite young athletes.
As a result of this art centre Mr Basil Sellers initiated a $15,000 Moruya art prize in 2004 which continues to this day which he followed up two years later with the Basil Sellers $100,000 Sport-Art Prize at the Ian Potter Museum of Art, Melbourne University which also continues. My wife Delma and I are honoured guests each at Official Opening.
My art took a further leap when I developed the Scriptural theme of painting to that of philosophical ideas that incorporated a range of life experiences which were easily identified with Christian ministry.
Having initiated a youth art program in Moruya, further assisted by my position as a member of the Moruya Art Council, that when we relocated to Tweed Heads in December 2005 Mr Basil Sellers again endorsed the Basil Sellers Tweed Art Studio where we continued the art youth program and further developed it for our Country Town Tours. This has meant many visits to rural art galleries and opportunities to engage at that ministry level.
One of Basil Sellers' original ideas shared with Mark Tronson was to recreate the Heildelburg Art House of the sixties where artists lived and dreamed together and remains part of the program.
As Chairman of Well-Being Australia, the art ministry has taken leaps and bounds in all these areas and when visiting the Australian Institute of Sport south east Queensland Sport Units, to assist in his own relaxation, he painted specific art works for these.
When the Basil Sellers Laguna Quays Respite cottage was established in 2011 on the Whitsundays mainland, we sought to build links within the local Midge Point – Bloomsbury communities which developed into the Basil Sellers Midge Point Art Prize from 2013-17. This is part of a community ministry project that now also includes an on-line news and mews for this small region www.mpbnews.org
Over many years the Gold Coast Guide's late Graham Aston likewise saw the merit of our ministry's art prize and donated a half page advert on our art in this highly acclaimed and award winning Gold Coast promotional guide.
As a member of the Tweed Heads Chamber of Commerce as the chairman of Well-Being Australia, each monthly breakfast meeting I donate a small art work to the business card drawer which has bought much acclaim to our art ministry.
For some years now I have been painting under our family's historical name 'Tronson du Coudray' and produce works of art for relaxation and enjoyment. A number of my works are commissioned such as a trilogy on Sport Anguish for Mr Basil Sellers.
Another enjoyable art form I've engaged in is 'desk art' - that is an A4 art work framed for one's work desk - office, ministry, sewing, craft, computer – whatever. These have been very welcomed. In creating they provide me a great sense of peace within my soul as if touched by the heavenlies for my own walk.
Dr Mark Tronson is a Baptist minister (retired) who served as the Australian cricket team chaplain for 17 years (2000 ret) and established Life After Cricket in 2001. He was recognised by the Olympic Ministry Medal in 2009 presented by Carl Lewis Olympian of the Century. He mentors young writers and has written 24 books, and enjoys writing. He is married to Delma, with four adult children and grand-children. Dr Tronson writes a daily article for Christian Today Australia (since 2008) and in November 2016 established Christian Today New Zealand.
Mark Tronson's archive of articles can be viewed at http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/mark-tronson.html