Post 1: Oversaved idea, First sketch





I am starting this blog to mainly improve my skills to better talk about my art. I had a blog I did this two years ago with my Eye of God show: http://shelleywhitingeyeofgodshow.blogspot.com/. This blog will coincide with breaks for calls for art and pieces for group shows. But I will continue this blog as long as the pictures for the series progress. I will also being taking photographs of each painting as it unfolds.
I was reading the church manual on Brigham Young. He said “No man can be oversaved.” This was a bizarre concept for me. When I heard this I thought of a church figure like a missionary or a priest with holy water coming repeatedly to save someone. Like an intervention that won’t stop.
The figures are lightly inspired by a cute 1960s movie called Mad Monster Party. It is a claymation musical with Boris Karloff and vampires. It’s sort of like gothic cereal figures. Has a nice retro feel but also very silly.
For years I have wanted to paint spirit baby Joseph Smith. It’s a lame idea. I’m sure that Joseph Smith was a spirit baby. The idea of this phenomenal man as a muppet baby walking around makes me smile.  South Park creators had an inside joke that they were going to put crab people into the show. The spirit baby Joseph Smith have become like that. I have been resilient and have tried several paintings with these so far.
Yes, I have painted Joseph Smith before. For me he is a contradiction. Some say he was a lying philanderer. I still think he was a complicated but inspired and mystically intense figure who was tarred and feathered, physically hurt for his convictions. For me, this proves that he believed there was some truth to religion.
With the first idea of oversaved I thought of someone having water dunked on them, which can also be sort of violent. Michelangelo would immerse his figures in water to see the folds of the person. The figure clothes are inspired by the wet drapery look.
The main figure has water falling all over his body.  On the sides are the little Joseph Smith baby figures.

I’m sure I’ll do another Joseph Smith figure dunked in water. But I would also like to expand on the thought of a person being oversaved. Also I would like to include the idea that maybe we do need to constantly reevaluate our spiritual beliefs and be saved repeatedly. I left the Mormon church for four years before I picked up Mormonism For Dummies as a novelty read and became immersed in the church again. I have continued to go to church for years afterwards.
Poster for Mad Monster Party
Example of wet drapery


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