When Van Gogh was a young man in his early twenties, he was in London studying to be a clergyman. He had no thought of being an artist at all. He sat in his cheap little room writing a letter to his younger brother in Holland, whom he loved very much. He looked out his window at a watery twilight, a thin lamp-post, a star, and he said in his letter something like this: “It is so beautiful I must show you how it looks.” And then on his cheap ruled note paper, he made the most beautiful, tender, little drawing of it.

…The moment I read Van Gogh’s letter I knew what art was, and the creative impulse. It is a feeling of love and enthusiasm for something, and in a direct, simple, passionate and true way, you try to show this beauty in things to others…

The difference between Van Gogh and you and me is, that while we may look at the sky and think it is beautiful, we don’t go so far as to show someone else how it looks.

B. Ueland

The Art of John Harris

The Art of John Harris

There are a lot of artists out there to appreciate, but you can’t replace those moments when you know you’ve found a favorite. A kindred spirit. That’s how I felt when I discovered the work of John Harris.

When I look at his paintings, I feel the 80’s, I see outer space, and I want to love nerdy things.

John Harris - REIMAGES

When Harris was asked about the appeal in depicting space, he responded:

“I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t physically and mentally stirred by ‘the vast’. I always felt it as a sensation in the body. Mentally, I associated it with the future. It filled me with electricity. This energy sparked off imagery in my mind, which I wanted to share.”

Yes. Here is an exemplar SPACE-O-RAMA spirit. And he creates as he considers deep space. Like a boss.

Take time to consider it and see what happens.

John Harris - REIMAGES

A brief interview with John Harris.

Writing is not a performance but a generosity.

…You should work from now on until you die, with real love and imagination and intelligence, at your writing or whatever work it is that you care about. If you do that, out of the mountains that you write some mole hills will be published. Or you may make a fortune and win the Nobel Prize. But if nothing is ever published at all and you never make a cent, just the same it will be good that you have worked.

B. Ueland

Futility Has A Point

Futility Has A Point

I came across a write-up on Scott McCloud, a genius of comic theory, of which I know nothing about. Apparently, he recently published his first graphic novel in 25 years, The Sculptor. I like stories, so I was interested.

Take a look at the whole piece when you get the chance. Here is an excerpt that reveals his worldview at play. I really enjoyed seeing his approach, and was intrigued by his version of the “meaning of life.” I look forward to getting a copy of The Scultpor and seeing his ideas of beauty illustrated.

Here is his interaction with the main character, David, a struggling sculptor in New York. He faces the universal tide of time. Is there even a more important tide to consider?

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But I maintain that well-written, thoughtful criticism serves a culture-making purpose: it helps us understand the world we live in new ways; it teaches us about and records our cultural history; and it helps us keep a pulse on ourselves and our culture. And when it’s written well, it brings us both insight and delight.

Alissa Wilkinson

Thabiti Anyabwile on Ferguson and the Movement

Thabiti Anyabwile on Ferguson and the Movement

I recently gathered together a selection of blog posts by Thabiti Anyabwile into a Word document starting back from November 17, 2014. Personally, there are certain blogs and columns I like to read on paper that I can hold in my hands and interact with using an actual pen. This is one of those instances, and the document should make it simple to print. There are several blogs on the current concerns of the day that I would commend to you, and this would be a good place to start.

You can download the document by clicking on ThabitiOnFerguson.

You can check out his blog at TGC by clicking here.

“My assumption is that the story of any one of us is in some measure the story of us all.”

Frederick Buechner, Listening to Your Life

Quotes from ‘The Stories We Tell’

Quotes from ‘The Stories We Tell’

I recently read The Stories We Tell by Mike Cosper. I hope many people get a chance to read it. Cosper doesn’t just share theories. He frequently dives into narratives, explaining the plotline and characters from a wide variety of TV shows and movies. I appreciated this non-abstract approach, and it felt like a short-story collection, except commercial breaks and channel surfing are included as you read along. Really.

Below, I have collected some noteworthy quotes from its book ends. I left out pieces from the main body of the book, in hopes that you will pick it up and enjoy it for yourself in its entirety! Here is your teaser.

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The Depth of Makers

The Depth of Makers

“Culture” is such a loaded word. As cited in Frame’s book, Ken Myers defines culture as a “dynamic pattern, an ever-changing matrix of objects, artifacts, sounds, institutions, philosophies, fashions, enthusiasms, myths, prejudices, relationships, attitudes, tastes, rituals, habits, colors and loves, all embodied in individual people, in groups and collectives and associations of people (many of whom do not know they are associated), in books, in buildings, in the use of time and space, in wars, in jokes, and in food.”

All the things that Myers lists are occasions for knowing God. Everything is tethered to him. Sure, while new revelation has ceased, and truth is a finished work, we still continue to see more unfolding and reimaged through this finished work. A new culture.

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Spacewalker

Spacewalker

Ed White, First American Spacewalker – On June 3, 1965 Edward H. White II became the first American to step outside his spacecraft and let go, effectively setting himself adrift in the zero gravity of space. For 23 minutes White floated and maneuvered himself around the Gemini spacecraft while logging 6500 miles during his orbital stroll. White was attached to the spacecraft by a 25 foot umbilical line and a 23-ft. tether line, both wrapped in gold tape to form one cord. In his right hand White carries a Hand Held Self Maneuvering Unit (HHSMU) which is used to move about the weightless environment of space. The visor of his helmet is gold plated to protect him from the unfiltered rays of the sun.

“I’m coming back in… and it’s the saddest moment of my life.”

Ed White expresses his sorrow at the conclusion of the first American spacewalk during the Gemini 4 mission on 3 June 1965.

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