Shining Forth in Art

“Shining Forth in Art,” New Era, Dec. 2012, 24–27

Shining Forth in Art

sun with eyes and rays

The 2012 International Art Competition for Youth invited young men and women around the world to submit artwork that shares their thoughts on this year’s Mutual theme: “Arise and Shine Forth.” These pieces represent the beautiful submissions received.

In Our Father’s Home

missionaries teaching a family

Margarita Patana C.

Age 17, Laguna, Philippines

“Because youth can be nurtured and enlightened by the word of God, we can all ‘arise and shine forth.’ The Book of Mormon can be used as our guide. We can arise and show our righteousness as youth in the Church.

“The missionaries represent two of my brothers who are serving missions. I appreciate the light they bring to others and especially the light they have given me.”


a large, bright star

Shaelynn A.

Age 17, Alberta, Canada

“The star in this painting represents Christ’s light in all of us and the light of the gospel. This light is shining forth in the darkness, creating a refuge for those who are searching for light. Every night a star shines forth in the darkness and manifests of His majesty, just as we can shine to all those who are searching for Christ.

“When we shine forth, people will notice we have the Spirit and a relationship with Heavenly Father. Our light can shine forth like a star in the night, and we will serve our Heavenly Father as His children.”

Eager Eyes

sailors looking toward a lighthouse

Samuel B.

Age 16, Utah, USA

“This painting is about a group of sailors who find themselves lost and confused after a storm, but the lighthouse shines to help guide them. It shows that as we ‘arise and shine forth’ by following our Savior’s example, then we can be guiding lights like the lighthouse.

“The storm and rough waters symbolize the challenges and trials we go through in life, and the sailors represent those we journey through life with. Through the red of the coat worn by the sailor on the right, I wanted to symbolize that Christ is with us and that, if we let Him, He can be the captain of our boat to guide us throughout our lives.”

Through the Mists

light shining through a forest

Andrew C.

Age 18, Utah, USA

“Once while hiking up a misty ridge near Yellowstone National Park, I looked up and saw bright beams of light descending through the mist and falling upon a young pine tree.

“This experience came at a time in my life when the oppression of the adversary made me feel as though there were dark mists over my eyes. The truths of the gospel of Jesus Christ are the light in my life, piercing through the dark mists and allowing me to grow and let my light shine forth. I know that even as a young tree grows to great heights, so can I. By letting my light shine forth, I can help others dealing with difficult trials.”

On the Way to Early-Morning Seminary

bicycle facing an empty road

Chih Yun C.

Age 16, Taiwan

“We should study the scriptures diligently and pursue the blessings God has in store for us. In this painting the straight road symbolizes the direction to eternal life, and the light on the road shows the blessings Heavenly Father has given me.

“Feasting upon the word of God daily helps us remain vigilant and make clear judgments. It is an important tool to stop Satan from controlling us. Although it is hard to attend early-morning seminary, it only feels hard at the beginning. The blessings that it brings are beyond imagination.”

Stretch with Grace


Emma H.

Age 13, Utah, USA

“This ballerina stretching upward portrays a young girl in a pose of graceful movement. The bar represents the iron rod, and her hand shows how we must reach toward God. I painted a peaceful face depicting tranquility that is a result of obedience.

“I will ‘arise and shine’ in darkness as I hold fast to the iron rod. Always stretching upward, I will focus on developing my talents to build His kingdom on earth.”

Turn Towards the Son


Claire Effie F.

Age 14, Washington, USA

“A sunflower ‘arises’ and grows taller than most other flowers. When it feels the heat from the sky, it turns toward the sun and completely opens itself to the sun’s rays.

“In this painting, the sunflower symbolizes us when we recognize the Light of Christ and are turned continually in His direction. We should be like the sunflower and grow, arise, and use God’s light to shine bright unto the rest of the world.

“The Light of Christ helps us be our best, rise above the world, and blossom so all the earth can see where true beauty comes from.”

Spiritual Refuge against the Dark: The Armor of Light, Power of Example

painting with youth holding candle, reading scriptures, etc

Javic Llave O.

Age 15, Capiz, Philippines

“My art represents the values and good works the youth of the Church must uphold. The background represents the world and its evil influence. It portrays that although we are in the world, we must not allow ourselves to be influenced by what the world offers.. The young man with a shield represents protection against temptation, suggesting that no matter how strong the temptations and influence of the adversary are, we can defend ourselves by putting into action the gospel principles we have learned. We can then ‘arise and shine forth.’

“I also used a candle to represent the Light of Christ, a tool to represent service, and an arrow to represent worldly influence and temptations.”

A Call to the Youth

angel Moroni statue

Candace W.

Age 17, Washington, USA

“This image reminds me of President Thomas S. Monson’s April 2011 general conference talk where he told the youth to ‘always have the temple in your sights’ (“The Holy Temple—a Beacon to the World,” Ensign, May 2011, 93).

“To me, ‘arise and shine forth’ means that we need to live our standards daily. By doing so, we will be worthy to enter the temple. The angel Moroni is a symbol for the temple, which in turn is a symbol for the Church. Our good works, as members of the Church, are a shining example to the world—a high standard for the nations.”