Sunday, December 9, 2007

One Banner #7- The Rock Star

Recapping the traditional arguments against unity in Christian comics:

Egos are too big.
People all have their own projects and don’t want to work on others’ projects.
We all approach the art differently.
Comic unity won’t work for the same reason that there are Christian denominations.
No one wants to take charge.
No one wants to submit to a person in charge.
There aren’t enough comics to justify a company.

Pride is clearly the main demon to blame for three of them, but I will go so far as to state that pride plays into every single one of them, and that pride is at the root of virtually every sin imaginable.

Egos the size of Captain Kirk’s are common when it comes to the creative arts. When my friend and I were radio DJ’s for a Christian show, our respective egos nearly cost us our friendship. No different when it comes to comics. There is something odd that comes over a person when they see their name in print. Immediately the dreams start to play into our heads and we become Captain Kirk. We can take on the galaxy. We can be Jim Lee or Alex Ross or any one of the guys that’s come of rock-star status.

Also playing into this: artists are notoriously insecure. Do not confuse insecurity with humility; they are worlds apart. Insecurity is a monster that begs to be appeased and fed with unending compliments, starved for positive feedback. Insecurity will come out as extreme defensiveness when criticized. Insecurity crushes the spirit.

Humility is its own reward. Pride asks, “How can I impress other people?” Humility asks, “How can I serve other people?” Pride asks, “How can I impress God?” Humility asks “How will God impress me?” Pride says, “Look at me! Look at my stuff with my big ole name on it!” Humility says, “Look at God!” or “Look at the work that guy over there is doing!”

I find annoying those who do nothing but self-promote on their blogs and message boards. You never see anything added to a conversation that doesn’t involve their own product placement. They’re not interested in souls or friends. They’re interested in themselves, masked in a shroud of artistic mission. If their work is attacked they take it personally and cut off friendships and fellowships. It is these types of people, whom it might seem are so active in the art, who are also doing the most to cut down unity. Coincidentally, it is these same people who are usually on the forefront of stating why unity will not work (cleverly inserting a commercial for their product into the argument along the way).

Artists: your skills came from God. They are a gift. God has also given you the means (time, money, mentors, materials) by which you can refine the gift. And any of it can be taken away in a microsecond. God and God alone is solely responsible, so we shouldn’t be taking a shred of credit for it. If you’re proud, you’re proud of something that someone else GAVE to you. And that’s foolishness. If there’s bragging to be done it should be done as boasting of God’s awesomeness, not your own contracts and premiere dates.

I’ve got a lot to say on this. I’m on a roll.

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