Thomas Dodd – Visualizing the Divine Feminine
I portray beauty as a fusion between the Divine Feminine and nature.
As an artist, my mission is to create images of women and to reveal the beauty that lives within each and every subject. When I work with women who are self-conscious about their figure or the stage of life they are in, it’s my mission to show them how their true beauty is not in how they’re shaped or even what they look like. I want them to see the inner radiance that’s always there. I’m trying to reveal something timeless by photographing many different types of women. Variety helps us see the beauty that’s right there in all of us.
When there is nudity in my work, it isn’t something for people to gawk at or get titillated and turned on by. I’m inspired by a vast tradition of art throughout history that celebrates and respects humanity. If there’s one thing I want people to get from my work, it’s the celebration, rather than the exploitation of femininity.
Finding my way out of the dark
Years ago alcoholism took me to a dark place. During the early days of sobriety, I found art. I think I was able to channel my addictive behavior into something very positive. I realized that that obsession can be very good when you’re obsessed with making beauty and touching people emotionally.
Since I quit drinking and became an artist, I’m happier, healthier, and more fulfilled than ever. I’m grateful to just be alive.
Nearly all of the growth I’ve experienced in my life I attribute to that journey of sobriety and of becoming an artist.
Paintings as living teachers
My parents had a great collection of art books in the house. I grew up with Rembrandt, Edvard Munch, Edward Hopper, and many other painters. What fascinated me most about paintings, was that they could be a movie in a single image or frame. They can imply an entire story about what has already happened and what is going to happen. When I put my imagination into it, I was able to interact with them. These wonderful paintings did not seem like archaic, dead images from centuries ago. They would interact with my psyche, as if they were alive and happening right now.
Art as a spiritual path
There’s something about the artistic journey that can be profoundly transformative. It’s a path not unlike spirituality or religion. It’s like I’m a digital shaman, using these creative tools to evoke forces and forms that are embedded in consciousness. I’m able to kind of access a state where my ego seems to disappear. From there I feel connected to some kind of force that’s greater than myself.
Becoming wealthy beyond measure
My father used to say, “life is all about relationships”. He taught me that you can’t judge a person by how much money they have in the bank or how successful they appear to be. He showed me that true wealth was found in the quality of relationships you have cultivated around you. Through my own life lessons and journey as an artist, I have come to see the depth of his wisdom. I have cultivated a much deeper and more genuine love for other people. I’m genuinely interested in hearing their stories.