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Tuesday, October 21, 2008

R&F Biennial show

The Seventh annual biennial show for R&F paints. Deadline is January 15, 2009.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The Artist Workshop, et cetera.

Workshops, social networking and information resource, or financial opportunity hidden beneath a veil? Workshops are given for all sorts of reasons, but I am particularly discussing those within the arts. For example a workshop was given on encaustic in Chicago by R&F Paints: I would have gone, and most likely enjoyed it, but unfortunately my career choice does not allow for me to spend money; need I say- starving artist.

As informative and wonderful, workshops might be- they seem often only open to the financially sound artist. Sure, I'm not saying that you won't be getting your monies worth, just that how can you expect to get a diverse group of individuals together without considering the diversity of your public; including financial diversity- which often includes underrepresented individuals of all kind? How can you get into these workshops, groups, organizations, etcetera- that would propagate social networking, particularly when you don't have financial stability? Are some of these places just ruses to financially benefit themselves?

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Me and the Encaustic Boom

Over the past seven years working extensively with encaustic (the past ten as a painter, and as far back as I can remember: an artist), I have been witness to an explosion of artists and resources devoted to the wax medium. However great the onslaught of this boom is, it is not without cheap tricks and those only cashing in (so to speak) on encaustic’s unique qualities.

When I first started working with encaustic it was hard to find those artists and resources. Even at the time, I had a professor teaching her students encaustic; Marilynn Derwenskus she was a great inspiration and resource. Nowadays it has become a flood. With a flood it often brings garbage (lets call it debris, it’s not as harsh)…..and with a flood it often brings debris left in its wake. Truthfully if you look amongst all of this debris you might find something useful there and here. And things will miraculously survive (these survivors are the inarguable pillars/giants/artists; those who have poured heart and soul, those having strong foundations built high above the flood plain; e.g. Jasper Johns/the recognizable). Now the challenge or trick is to sort through all the pieces to find what is good.

Me: This piece of art is debris; it’s nothing but fanciful texture- tricks, it has no soul.

Friend: This one too, nothing but technique, technique, TECHNIQUE.

Me: We’ll never find anything.

Encaustic Boom: I found some!

Me and Friend: Shut up! That’s debris.

Friend: How will we know when we have something more?

Me: You just will. It’s like when those artists saw the sublime qualities of unspoiled country hundreds of years ago and painted the great American landscape; they were in ah.

Friend: Does that even exist anymore? And are we (people) even smart enough to recognize it?

Me: I found one!

Friend: Ooooo! Ahhh!

Anyway, as for artists such as myself it is becoming ever more difficult to sift and (this is the big one) be sifted from the “debris.” Sure, everything seems to have debris; however, encaustics new infancy has grown into an obnoxious teenager; a bastard in a basket (Sorry I just saw the movie “There Will Be Blood”). Debris is everywhere, it stinks, and it’s covered in mud, dirt and grime. OK, I admit that was a little harsh. There is a bright side to all of this, sunshine on the horizon, it isn’t all bad. Some of us (I like to think myself included) have built themselves a canoe. Sure, a canoe isn’t a sturdy high and dry foundation but it is a good start. Those of us in are canoes could just sit around, wait to be rescued, at least we’re not part of the debris. I think I will paddle around a bit.

Encaustic isn’t that special, it is what the artist does with it that is special. Sometimes debris is just debris; stop patronizing it and recognize it for what it truly is: DEBRIS. Just because someone has the resources: time, money, and the ability to bull-shit their backyard mess onto gallery walls, into magazines, and especially online- doesn’t make them Jasper Johns.

Encaustic is special (I know I said it wasn’t) but it is to some of us, ME. I know as a medium it has its faults and I know those faults from experience. But as a naturalist I feel it is nature friendly as a medium can be. I also don’t limit myself to it (because of that is the not so special thing I sorta brought up but don’t have time to get deeply into). I also don’t limit myself to it because it strength are in its flexibilities. I have to educate myself on ways to apply it to the many modes of expression I seek.

As for hopes of being sifted I have or am in the process of building this canoe (a website/blog take a look, let me know what you think, I am updating it as fast as a person can.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)

Along with Bird Friendly®, Northwest Shade Coffee Campaign, and many others, you can also help the birds by eating fish with the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) label. Click on the image to learn more.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Migration Time

Well it’s that time of year; birds of all kind are visiting along the shores of the great lakes region. I have been out shooting photographs, sketching notes, or just plain observing. It’s great for me because I have a lot of time on my hands, unemployment D ; well I guess it depends on how you look at it. On the other hand, I have been getting a lot of illustrations done for my book on birds; consisting mainly of watercolor and ink, check some of them out on my blog I have also been getting a lot of ideas for some new encaustic pieces; even though I can't paint encaustic right now. Well if you haven't already done it and you live along the lakes- or anywhere, get out there and enjoy the birds.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Bird Friendly® coffee

If you would like to help the birds while drinking organically certified coffee, look for this Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center, Bird Friendly® certification label. Click on the logo to find out more.

Here is another label to look for.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Have a Question? Need Help with Encaustic?

Or Make a Comment or Suggestion. 

Go to ParksArtworks Page on Facebook. If you do not have a Facebook account, post your comments below the "you might also like" links.

Responses often come in the form of updates involving your detailed posts. I will review each and every one of them and make them viewable as soon as possible. Your thoughts and patience are very much appreciated.

Thank you,
Jonathan Parks
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