AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF)– Lisa Anne Tindal is no stranger to the Aiken community.
She was a mental health advocate for years in her role with Mental Health America of Aiken County, and her compassionate work with Nurture Home.
And now, having retired from mental health, she’s been able to embrace an “encore career” and put her most creative thoughts and images on paper.
Lisa has just released her first children’s book, which she wrote and illustrated, Look at the Birds.
Jennie: Lisa, I tell you, it’s been really neat to follow you on Facebook and see the opportunity you’ve had to express your creative side through painting and through the written word. And now it’s just kind of come together in a children’s book. Tell me about it.
“Well, that’s a good description, Jennie. It just came together because I started keeping my granddaughter. My daughter’s a school teacher, and that was the reason for my retirement. And our favorite thing to do when she was a tiny infant was for me to just point out the birds. Now I am not a bird expert, but I love birds. And so that was our daily ritual, was me just noticing the birds with her. And one morning driving out here at the crack of dawn, ’cause it’s the only job I’ve ever had that I’m not really late to, which is funny. But I just started thinking about my concerns personally, transitioning from a professional to a grandmother, and how sometimes for women that, who’ve been professionals for so long, that can feel a little bit awkward and it can be a tough transition. And I just started thinkin’ about the times that we were gonna be lookin’ at the birds again in just a little bit. And the scripture, Matthew 6:26 came to mind. And I came inside, put my stuff down, the baby was still sleeping, and pulled out my phone and wrote this story called Look at the Birds.“
Jennie: I think that is a wonderful, wonderful story. You had a lotta skills to support this, though. And one of the things you have been doing is painting, and is it angels that you paint or ladies? How would you describe it? And I know you’ve had some art shows.
“They’re very comforting and they’re based on my life verse, Isaiah 30:15, and quiet confidence is your strength. I had an opportunity just last weekend to talk about the women that I paint. And they are, over time, sort of becoming angels. More often, they’re havin’ wings. But it’s really, and from my work with Nurture Home and in the mental health field, and then prior to that, with child welfare, helping women, I’ve always wanted women to see their inner strength and their grace, and their poise. And so I like to think that the female figures that I paint sort of emote an inner strength and a strength that comes from redemption, and from choosing to live past your sorrows. So that’s how that started. And then I am convinced that anyone can be an artist. I have evolved as an artist. I’ve ventured off in trying new things. I love painting abstracts now, but it’s very much a comfort, and I would encourage anyone to paint, because it’s just another way of telling stories.”
Jennie: Yeah, that’s right, that’s right. I minored in art in college and I used to paint, and I loved it. I loved the opportunity to just put color on paper and express myself that way. And I’ve always said for so many years, I’m gonna paint again. And then I wonder, when am I gonna do that? If I don’t put up an easel now, when am I going to?
“You definitely should.”
Jennie: But I love looking at you, Lisa, as someone who, like you said, you didn’t just stop when you retired. You’re growing, this is a whole new growth for you. And you’ve made a way to put those talents to work.
“Yes, well, I will tell you, Look at the Birds the children’s book I’ve written, with the message of you are valued and you are loved, and I didn’t really realize it until after I wrote it, that it’s more than a story for an infant or a toddler, for the parent or grandparent or dad or uncle to share with a child. As the adult is reading it, it re-instills that absolute hope in us, just how much we’re valued by God. And so it’s really interesting how God does those kinda things. You set out to do something and you realize, hey, there’s some learning here for me. There’s a lesson here for me. It’s always been the case for me in that my work with Mental Health America, with Nurture Home, many, many times I was more of the student than the teacher. And so this book is that. And but I’ll tell you, I like to be confident in my art, but Look at the Birds, the children’s book that I’ve written and published is the only thing in my life I’ve truly done without any hesitation. So it’s available on Amazon. Any day now there’ll be a press release. And so different media outlets will be aware of it. Retailers can order it through Ingram Publishing. It’s available in downtown Aiken at 3 Monkeys. It’s available on my website, which is LisaAnneTindal.me, and individuals can order a signed copy there, thank you.”
Her book is available at Amazon and the outlets below: