We’re seeing more and more artists combining their faith and their art/work, after all why wouldn’t they? As Andrew puts it ‘[his] faith is so interwoven in who he is that no matter what he does [faith] would be represented at the core’. We find this truly inspiring and are excited to see more and more artists create from the overflow of their faith.
Andrew Lennon is originally from the Philippines but is currently living in Lynchburg, Virginia with his wife, they’re currently expecting their first baby! He is a freelance Designer and the Pastor of Breakthrough Church.
We first came across Andrew’s work while watching Set Sail’s project ‘The Creator Series’ on Youtube, and we loved his story and work. We’re pretty sure you’re going to love learning about him through this interview. Make sure you check out his stunning work and maybe purchase a design or two.
[I would love to] use design as a bridge to minister and further the Kingdom in the mainstream industry.
Did you always know you wanted to be a designer?
Since a young age, I had a deep desire to be an artist. However, it was never something I thought I would actually pursue professionally. A majority of my family were in the medical field or something in higher education. So the idea of being an artist was never encouraged- because it was never seen as a stable profession. However, it wasn’t until the beginning of high school that I started getting into digital art and graphic design- it was then that I grew to love it. I never vocationally studied Graphic Design; in college I ended up pursuing a ministry focused degree- since that was and is what the Lord was calling me to do. Nearing the end of college I actually got a job at my university as a graphic designer. While I was working that job, on the side I started doing freelance work- that was the launch pad from me realizing I wanted to pursue it more seriously.
How did you get started?
In highschool I got a wacom bamboo tablet and used to draw cartoons and was trying to get into animation. I eventually started designing t-shirts for clubs and then I did some stuff for my journalism class. This then eventually got me into the realm of graphic design and was where I got introduced to photoshop. When I was in college, I started designing for some friends and then I finally started putting my work out there. From there people started hiring me to design custom tattoo designs, I started reaching out to artists that I liked and did work for them which snowballed into me getting more work and furthering my audience. About a year ago- I felt the Lord calling me to quit my day job to focus solely on ministry and to trust Him to provide through my freelance work as our main income.
I felt the Lord calling me to quit my day job to focus solely on ministry and to trust Him to provide through my freelance work as our main income.
Where did the name Saint Lennon come from?
The word “Saint” means holy one and “Lennon” is my last name. Through what Jesus has done on the cross we receive His holiness through faith- it is not something we try to strive for. So now all who believe can rightfully take the name “saint” and “holy one”. The name “Saint Lennon” kind of happened as a result of this revelation and the identity that I carry in Christ, I also thought it just sounded cool haha.
What has been the hardest thing about pursuing design on a freelance basis?
What I didn’t realize going into freelance design was that there were so many components associated with it. Besides doing design work, I am also running a business by myself. I am having to communicate, get clients, figure out contracts, taxes, and all of that fun stuff. I would say running the business end of being an artist may be the hardest thing, mainly because it’s what i have the least amount of experience in.
You’re also a Pastor right? How did you get started in ministry?
Yes, so besides doing freelance full-time I am also a pastor and a church planter. So a few months before I started college I was getting pretty burned out with my faith- there wasn’t much life and abundance. So I started seeking the Lord in my bedroom all by myself- I started getting in the word and worshiping. It was in this season that I started to encounter the Lord in real and powerful way. I grew up in a pretty dry church environment, so this was all new to me. I started encountering the presence of God, learning His voice, and nature for the first time. I encountered God as father and realize the weight of the cross- I remember every morning I was so by the Holy Spirit that I would be dancing and weeping in my bedroom for hours. It got so intense that I had to start locking my bedroom door because I didn’t want to freak my parents out. In this season the Lord started healing me of so much internal brokenness and completely changed my perspective on myself, people, and Him. I was so fired up about that I had to tell everyone about Jesus. I started reaching out to friends and random people from High School and started a prayer meeting and a year later it turned into a house church. Eventually our house church grew out of three different locations and then the Lord told me about two years ago to establish it as a local church body.
Have you found it hard to be doing full time ministry and full time design work? How do manage your time?
It definitely has its moments, but both things are so life giving that it really doesn’t really feel that hard to manage. They definitely take a lot of work and time but the Lord has fully graced me to do them both in excellence. I am constantly having to surrender my responsibilities to the Lord and lean on the Holy Spirit to lead me and help me do everything I need to do. One of the best ways I’ve found that helps me to manage everything- I take a sabbath once a week. So I have one intentional day a week where I rest, I don’t work, I don’t focus on ministry. I just enjoy the Lord and my family, and recharge.
My faith is so interwoven in who I am that no matter what I would be doing it would be represented at the core.
What’s been your journey with God so far?
It’s been a journey of complete faith and obedience. He has continued to blow my expectation for my life and taken me places I never thought I would go. If you were going to tell me 4 years ago that I would be doing ministry and freelance full-time, I wouldn’t believe you. It’s also been a journey of mystery and abundance. My life has literally felt like the lord just shining on one step ahead and inviting me trust him and take that step. I have no clue what the next 4 years will look like- but I know that it will be abundant.
How do you keep your faith at the centre of what you do in the creative industry?
I think for me it is something that naturally flows out. My faith is so interwoven in who I am that no matter what I would be doing it would be represented at the core. When we create we have the ability and access to co-create with God. I think it is so much more than creating art that has a biblical connotation- rather creating art that is an overflow of intimacy with the Lord and that contains beauty.
We believe God gives us big dreams, what is your dream project?
I would love to do work for big artists in any capacity- for people like Kanye or Chance the Rapper. And use design as a bridge to minister and further the Kingdom in the mainstream industry. I really love what Jerry Lorenzo is doing with Fear of God, because He and his brand are very outwardly Christian but what he’s doing is recognized by even unbelievers because it carries so much excellence and quality.
What is one thing you find particularly important for Christians to do/be today?
Do everything out of overflow which comes from dwelling with God in the secret place. The world doesn’t need Christians that look like the world, the world needs Christians that look like Jesus. Romans 8:19 says “creation waits in eager expectation for the revelation of the sons of God”. So the world is literally waiting for Christians to step into their identity- and this comes from and overflow of knowing Jesus intimately.
What keeps you motivated and inspired?
My wife 100 percent is what keeps me motivated, all of this isn’t easy and it definitely has its moments. But having a partner who is constantly encouraging me in life and my art- is a game changer. But what keeps me inspired is constantly being aware of my surroundings- all around there are things that inspire; whether its a color on a person’s shirt walking by, a font on a street sign, the production of a song i’m listening to, etc.
What does success look like for you?
Success to me looks like being the best husband and father that I can be. Developing rich history with God and being obedient to all he calls me to. And lastly seeing others succeed and helping them step into their calling.
Three things you’re consuming right now
What I am reading right now: The Person & Work of the Holy Spirit by R. A. Torrey
What music I am listening to right now: John Mark McMillian’s new stuff
What I am watching right now: The Mandalorian on Disney Plus