Wednesday, November 11, 2015
Making art: pointing others to the unseen, eternal so they can take their eyes off the seen and temporary
Julia Owens and Jeff Rogers, I think I had an epiphany why you and my brother AJ urged me to un-quit writing, and I saw brianjdodd.blogspot.com through fresh eyes yesterday that I'd like to talk to you about soon. I have always thought of Bible teaching in the semi-scientific terms that I was reared on in college and seminary, but only yesterday, 20 years after completing it, realized the impact that the Sheffield Ph.D. program had on me as an artist. Somehow, and I'm not sure how this is, my brain went from being a "disciplined scientist" to being an undisciplined artist. I refused to write regularly partly because of burnout from writing 5 books after the Ph.D. dissertation while keeping down a full-time job, and partly because of my self-chosen trip into the desert to detox from the religion people have made up about Jesus in our country. Julia and Jeff, you are two of the most disciplined artists I know. Julia you structure a schedule in an almost Kant-like style to make art. Jeff, you are so prolific, but you have God on your side so that is no fair: you live in Kentucky and the art you make is framing the art God made. What do I need to do to become a disciplined artist? Block the time and just do it? I am coming out of the desert and about to start writing again after a 10+ year hiatus. I'm glad I quit. I am glad you wouldn't let me quit entirely. Abraham Lincoln said, "If I had 8 hours to cut down a tree, I would spend the first 6 sharpening my saw." I've been sharpening my saw for 10+ years, and I'm about to cut me some wood, baby. I'm about to unleash a torrent of art I paint with words. I think I have 4 or 5 books left in me. Ingrid Dodd would like me to "go fishing" or something because I'm driving her crazy with all this gathered, pent up energy. Let the paint fly, says he. I have returned to my studio as of today. (Clifford Schroeder I messaged you the wrong address for my blog--correct one above; Wes Foster I may have given you the wrong address at Panera Seminary yesterday--see above).