Skip to main

Charcoal Artist Visits Great Hearts Christos

Great Hearts Christos February 23, 2024 -

Charcoal artist speaking to students next to his artwork

Charcoal artist Josh Hernandez from Mad Charcoal came to speak to the students of Great Hearts Christos Phoenix about being a Christian artist. Hernandez is known for his chaotic and symphonic drawing and painting process, mesmerizing onlookers with a delicate balance of realism and abstract expressionism.

After a successful career as a graphic and digital designer, Hernandez has returned to his passion of fine art and has gained world-wide exposure not only for his art, but the entertaining way in which he can quickly create beautiful masterpieces right before your eyes in record time. He spoke to the scholars at the private school about how he honors God in all that he creates and credited his faith for enabling him to be creative.

“He was excited about the opportunity to come speak to our students about his love for Jesus and how he reflects God’s creativity as he produces art,” said Susi Martens, art teacher at Great Hearts Christos Phoenix. She explained how he took a few charcoal lines and then smudges them into a face of beauty and depth. “The students challenged Josh to see if he could sketch a horse under five minutes. The scholars were captivated as he sketched, and they were very impressed by the results,” she said.

Charcoal sketch of a horse

All the grades at the private Christian academy had the opportunity to submit, under Martens direction, horse drawings for the Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show. “They really did a great job noting the specific details of an Arabian horse,” said Martens.

Student drawing of a horse

Dean of Campus Jayne Bostow had the opportunity to view the artwork at the horse show. “I do believe we have a great chance of winning quite a few ribbons,” she said. “Mrs. Martens has done an amazing job with these students.”

Student drawing of a horse

While Bostow admits she is not an artist, she appreciated how Hernandez showed the children how something that seems like a “mess” to begin with can be turned into a something beautiful after all the detail is added, much like how God takes our messy lives and turns them into something beautiful.

Martens concluded that, “Art is unique tool we use to express and communicate; we can feel God’s good pleasure as we create!”

Do you have a story or know of a story that you would like to see featured at Great Hearts?  Please contact