F ruit in the Desert is a site that we created to spread the Good News in a digital format. Our focus is on Missions and Ministries, as well as Redemptive Media and Movies. It is a joint effort between journalist/actor /consultant Diane Howard and designer/illustrator David Ray Skinner. Our goal is to shine a spotlight on the faith and goodness that is reflected in various missions and ministries around the world, as well as the Gospel’s redemptive message that is currently being woven into the movies and entertainment being produced today.
Dr. Diane Howard is a frontline journalist of depth and breadth, known for exclusive interviews with leading figures in artistic, redemptive media. She has interviewed many leading actors, producers, and writers, as well as directors in top redemptive movies. She focuses on the “big picture,” the back story, and the redemptive journey of faith, as well as the remarkable acts of sacrificial, courageous service behind the scenes. Having lived and traveled all over the world, as well as having a depth of scholarship, she brings an historical and universal perspective to her singular interviews.
She also serves as talent and as a dialogue, dialect, voice-over coach. A former Professor of Performance, Media, and Film Studies with a Ph.D. in Performance Studies (College of Communication, University of Texas, Austin), she has been involved in multiple aspects of artistic, redemptive communication media, regionally to internationally. She is also a published scholar and author. She has served most extensively in the film industry in the following roles:
- Talent Resumes (film, television, radio, video conferences/webcasts on platforms, stages, and e-technologies as an actor, singer, and presenter)
- Publications, Books, News Articles
- Movies as a Dialogue/Dialect Coach and Supervisor
- Television, Video conferences and Web Casts
- Radio, Voice-Over Productions
- Educational Organizations
- Theater/Performing Arts Facilities (for plays, musicals, operettas)
David Ray Skinner studied art and journalism at Carson-Newman College (now University) in Jefferson City, Tennessee and began his career as writer, reporter, and artist for The Sevier County Times, a weekly paper in the Smoky Mountains of East Tennessee. In 1977, he landed in New York City, where he became the cartoonist and paste-up artist, and, eventually, the Art Director, for the international music trade magazine, Record World. After five years at Record World, Skinner went to work for Doubleday, art directing their prestigious Literary Guild Magazine.
In 1984, Skinner relocated to Atlanta, where he co-founded Indelible Inc., a print, design and advertising agency, and he also became involved in various music projects, including Johnny Cash’s gospel video and CD, Return to the Promised Land, for which he designed the logo and co-wrote the title track with Cash and Cash’s manager, Hugh Waddell.
Since 2001, Skinner has produced an online literary magazine called SouthernReader and has recently started producing an online Christian magazine called FaithLines. In 2005, he founded Bridgital, an advertising and design agency for which he creates advertising, marketing, illustration and design.
Both Diane and David are contributors to The Christian View Magazine, Diane as film writer and reviewer and David as Art Director.