Stagnant Art

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Kojikun

Well-known member
Oct 5, 2018
2,708
1,762
113
#1
If I have found out anything with my walk with Christ it is how ridiculously stagnant and uneventful some of the media and art is from Christians. Its either very cringy and something that will never appeal to a non christian or the ultra fundamentalist claim how evil it is. If appealing to non believers is a form of spreading the Gospel than we should be making something that can appeal to everyone. Some that says "Hey this Christ person seems pretty great I should look into it" However I discovered in kind of a culture shock kind of way how different many conservative Christians grow up. I joined a Christian nerd group and I constantly hear of old shows that are rather foreign to me. Veggietales, Bibleman etc. Where I grew up with Bevis and Butthead and a diet of Disney and Hard R rated action films (I remember trying to fit the entire movie Speed with Kenau Reeves and Dennis Hopper before my first day of second grade) Was this a good way to grow up? seeing how I struggle with a 20+ year porn addiction I would say no. So obviously there should be lines drawn in the sand but as an artist and a writer its hard to figure out where to put those lines. Its so easy to be boring or be called evil or demonic (The reason I no longer share my artwork on here) that one wonders why even bother with anything remotely creative. I guess I'm trying to find a medium I can be comfortable with. I know Im not alone as I go forward with a new card game planned out I have joined several creative christian nerd groups and they deal these problems as well. That sweet spot that you feel like you give glory to God well making it as appealing as possible while somehow not watering down scripture like some Mega Church and avoiding as much scathing critic by the peanut gallery. All things are possible with God so we will keep trying :)
 

ArtsieSteph

Senior Member
Apr 1, 2014
5,788
968
113
29
Arizona
#2
It’s difficult I think sometimes for artists to make their stuff look good/current because to make the things that are popular now you have to consume modern media. And for some folk they don’t want to, because often times they have very not good content.

I’ve been into a lot of anime, so therefore my art has anime influences. Many anime are totally inappropriate and violent. I used to watch Steven Universe, and I know I have some things from that show in my style too. I stopped because of how hard that the LGBT angle was throughout the veins of the show.

You see what I mean? For it to be truly appealing to the world you gotta cater to the world’s tastes - to a degree.
 

Kojikun

Well-known member
Oct 5, 2018
2,708
1,762
113
#3
It’s difficult I think sometimes for artists to make their stuff look good/current because to make the things that are popular now you have to consume modern media. And for some folk they don’t want to, because often times they have very not good content.

I’ve been into a lot of anime, so therefore my art has anime influences. Many anime are totally inappropriate and violent. I used to watch Steven Universe, and I know I have some things from that show in my style too. I stopped because of how hard that the LGBT angle was throughout the veins of the show.

You see what I mean? For it to be truly appealing to the world you gotta cater to the world’s tastes - to a degree.
Yeah I understand that. Great point. Yes you do have to make it appealing and keep to true to scripture which is easier said than done. Its good where both in communities that help eachother out. I don't think I could figure it out myself. Im starting a new card game and book series so Im kind of testing the waters so to speak. And yeah I was a fan of Steven Universe before they decided to remind you how gay everyone was multiple times an episode.
 

Kojikun

Well-known member
Oct 5, 2018
2,708
1,762
113
#4
It’s difficult I think sometimes for artists to make their stuff look good/current because to make the things that are popular now you have to consume modern media. And for some folk they don’t want to, because often times they have very not good content.

I’ve been into a lot of anime, so therefore my art has anime influences. Many anime are totally inappropriate and violent. I used to watch Steven Universe, and I know I have some things from that show in my style too. I stopped because of how hard that the LGBT angle was throughout the veins of the show.

You see what I mean? For it to be truly appealing to the world you gotta cater to the world’s tastes - to a degree.
As for inappropriate and violence I get that I had to tone town some of my art and books several times after becoming Christian. Im a fan of anime and video game fight scenes the struggle is appealing to me but its got to be good vs evil and good wins and Im starting to find copious amounts of blood distasteful so I try to stick to the lighter Shounens
 

morefaithrequired

Well-known member
Sep 28, 2019
2,194
1,245
113
#5
its a fine line you tread, but as far as I am concerned we Christians need people like you testing the boundaries. Keep questioning to find a deeper authenticity.
 

Kojikun

Well-known member
Oct 5, 2018
2,708
1,762
113
#7
its a fine line you tread, but as far as I am concerned we Christians need people like you testing the boundaries. Keep questioning to find a deeper authenticity.
Test everything as Paul says
 
Oct 12, 2012
1,532
916
113
64
#8
If I have found out anything with my walk with Christ it is how ridiculously stagnant and uneventful some of the media and art is from Christians. Its either very cringy and something that will never appeal to a non christian or the ultra fundamentalist claim how evil it is. If appealing to non believers is a form of spreading the Gospel than we should be making something that can appeal to everyone. Some that says "Hey this Christ person seems pretty great I should look into it" However I discovered in kind of a culture shock kind of way how different many conservative Christians grow up. I joined a Christian nerd group and I constantly hear of old shows that are rather foreign to me. Veggietales, Bibleman etc. Where I grew up with Bevis and Butthead and a diet of Disney and Hard R rated action films (I remember trying to fit the entire movie Speed with Kenau Reeves and Dennis Hopper before my first day of second grade) Was this a good way to grow up? seeing how I struggle with a 20+ year porn addiction I would say no. So obviously there should be lines drawn in the sand but as an artist and a writer its hard to figure out where to put those lines. Its so easy to be boring or be called evil or demonic (The reason I no longer share my artwork on here) that one wonders why even bother with anything remotely creative. I guess I'm trying to find a medium I can be comfortable with. I know Im not alone as I go forward with a new card game planned out I have joined several creative christian nerd groups and they deal these problems as well. That sweet spot that you feel like you give glory to God well making it as appealing as possible while somehow not watering down scripture like some Mega Church and avoiding as much scathing critic by the peanut gallery. All things are possible with God so we will keep trying :)

Hey my brother, this is probably off Target with your current conversation, but have you ever been to the art museum at the passion play in eureka springs, Arkansas?! I realize your speaking of different art forms, but was Just wondering??
 

Kojikun

Well-known member
Oct 5, 2018
2,708
1,762
113
#9
Hey my brother, this is probably off Target with your current conversation, but have you ever been to the art museum at the passion play in eureka springs, Arkansas?! I realize your speaking of different art forms, but was Just wondering??
Afraid not. How is it?
 
Oct 12, 2012
1,532
916
113
64
#12
Cool! :) one day maybe. I live rather far from there
Just a suggestion!!!😁 The play itself is worth the trip! But there's a lot more, Google the website! Something like this might be the reset button to get you jump started!? 😲🙏🔥
 

laughingheart

Senior Member
Sep 21, 2016
796
788
93
#13
I'm going to come at this from a slightly different angle. Art is about communication. We as artists want to express something. We want someone else to experience something. We live for feedback. Who you are, and what you believe to be true, needs to find its place in your artwork for it to have impact. Sometimes people produce a jumble of cliches that have no impact. It is just a jumble of words or images. We might want to convey a feeling or experience but it needs to be true. Now I know that that begs the question about fiction, but even our fiction needs a purpose. I love the quote, "We do not need people to believe in dragons, we just need to make people believe that they can defeat dragons."
From a Christian perspective we need to know who we are and what we are trying to communicate. I go back to Philippians 4:8 "Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things." What is true? It can be sad, it can reflect the brokenness in our society or our own hearts. Life is difficult. I am not saying you can only write rainbows and kittens. The book Frankenstein had, at its core, the message, that when man tries to play God, it goes horribly wrong. It might be a horror but it had a key truth.
Sometimes our art is stagnant because we have lost connection with what we want to say. Who is your audience? What do you want to share? Do you have a full story, or an image or a vignette? I did an exercise on who I was as an author. Defining my audience and and point of view was critical to moving forward. I like writing humour, a bit of whimsy, my key audience is 40+ women and I also go for a raw truth in adjusting to a time in life without clearly defined societal roles. I looked over what I'd written and it helped to see where I wanted to go. I pushed the boundaries to try other writing styles.
What you find cringy is when someone has an agenda and tries to shove it into a story form but the artform itself is sacrificed. It is not storytelling, it is propaganda. We can't hide behind what others have done poorly, or not how we have done it. There is only one you and you as a believer have full authority to create from a source of truth. It is never either faith or not faith. We are never separate from what we believe to be true. If you want to create great things then share great things. All the best brother.
 

Lynx

Folksy yet erudite
Aug 13, 2014
15,355
3,023
113
#14
So I read the whole thread, and I knew exactly what I was going to say... and laughingheart said all of it, and said it better than I could have.

*sigh

All that is left for me to do is say "yeah, what laughingheart said." So yeah... what laughingheart said.
 

Lynx

Folksy yet erudite
Aug 13, 2014
15,355
3,023
113
#15
What you find cringy is when someone has an agenda and tries to shove it into a story form but the artform itself is sacrificed. It is not storytelling, it is propaganda. We can't hide behind what others have done poorly, or not how we have done it. There is only one you and you as a believer have full authority to create from a source of truth. It is never either faith or not faith. We are never separate from what we believe to be true. If you want to create great things then share great things. All the best brother.
This especially. As a music nerd I find this a LOT in christian music. They don't start from "This is something I have on my heart that I need to express, and music is a good way to express it." They start from "We need to make a new album to make money, so let's generate some songs Christians will buy." A few trite cliches, a good beat, a popular name on the label and voila! The recipe is complete.
 

laughingheart

Senior Member
Sep 21, 2016
796
788
93
#16
This especially. As a music nerd I find this a LOT in christian music. They don't start from "This is something I have on my heart that I need to express, and music is a good way to express it." They start from "We need to make a new album to make money, so let's generate some songs Christians will buy." A few trite cliches, a good beat, a popular name on the label and voila! The recipe is complete.
This!