By Jordan DeWald
“Where the spirit does not work with the hand, there is no art.” (Leonardo da Vinci) Art has been a part of Bonnie’s life for as long as she can remember. She learned from an early age that creative arts can be done both as a hobby and as a craft that benefits people. It can even be a career. Her grandparents were artists. Bonnie watched both of her parents use their creativity in their careers as both worked in the publication field. She had a talent for the field and was encouraged and guided by art teachers as a young artist while a student at Burleson High School. She continued painting, designing and crafting on her own time through her adult life. Her eye for design and skill allowed her to have a successful career with successful local publications, including being the art director for Fort Worth Weekly. A few years ago though, she left the corporate world and took her skills to serve in ministry when Bonnie became the Director of Communications at Pathway Church in Burleson.
Through her role at Pathway, Bonnie gets to use the talents she has, and do what she enjoys, to serve God and others. A value of Pathway is “connecting people to people, and people to God.” She gets to do that through the lens that people are most widely using right now, media. Bonnie and her assistant are responsible for all of the social media accounts, environmental design, print artwork, marketing and pretty much any visual communication Pathway has. Pathway holds a much more significant role as a place of employment for Bonnie though. Bonnie recounts when she started attending Pathway in 2011, and describes it as being transformative for her whole family. She is active in the church with her husband and son as well as her parents.
Bonnie’s love of art has extended beyond her work at Pathway. The community recently benefited from her leadership when she brought back the Art Walk in Old Town. She has long had a desire to connect artists and do something to encourage the visual arts in Burleson and began to see that others wanted that too. She reached out to the City of Burleson and they were supportive and happy to help her make it a reality. The purpose of the Art Walk was to bring awareness to artists in the community and the responses through the day were positive. The people involved were excited to see the Art Walk back and excited to see what is next. Bonnie enjoyed interacting with the Old Town businesses and was impressed by the positive support they all showed towards the event. Because of Bonnie’s experience going through the art program at BHS, it was a priority to her to involve the school district and include student artists in the event.
Bonnie also uses her gifts as a freelance design artist. She has worked with local small businesses and nonprofits doing graphic design and overseeing social media. She also used her talents as the Communications person for the PTO at Nola Dunn, designing the artwork for several of their fundraising events, and more.
With her upbringing, talents, gifting, education and interests, Bonnie Mays really couldn’t be anything other than an artist. How she has chosen to use those gifts has been a gift to her local community. Her church, her town and organizations are all made better because Bonnie has made the decision to honor God with her talents and unselfishly share them with others.