For most of my life, the design patterns of the Bible lingered just beneath my perception, like an inaudible rhythm that was felt rather than heard. I remember mixing up the stories of Joseph and Daniel—those two devout dream-interpreters promoted in the courts of foreign kings—but still not recognizing them as literary parallels. Now, as I’m learning to identify these patterns, examples spring readily to mind. This is because I have, in a sense, already registered them at an intuitive level.
Even if I fancy myself a perceptive, “artsy” person, I know there are plenty of clever patterns in movies, television, and comic books that breeze right past me. But for my favorite works of art, the ones I rewatch or reread devotedly, even the faintest patterns become distinct.
Back to the Drawing Board
All that said, my personal approach to storyboarding is still to err on the side of the obvious. We are trying to make educational videos after all, so Rose’s maxim of clarity still abides. Ever dropped a bunch of seemingly blatant clues about what you want for your birthday only to be disappointed? My “obvious” hints probably aren’t as obvious to others as they seem to me!
The literary style of the Bible is centuries removed from the modern medium of the internet explainer video. But the prophets and poets who wrote the Bible established a practice of careful repetition and recapitulation that works just as well today.
Once a mild-mannered assistant editor at Dark Horse Comics, Everett Patterson was bitten by a radioactive Bible and became a junior Art Director for BibleProject in Portland, Oregon. Before working on the How to Read the Bible series, he illustrated the majority of the Read Scripture/Overview series.