Wednesday, June 30, 2010

This week has gone to the birds and that's a good thing.

The swans had their babies yesterday they came to see us and to show off their little brood.
Isn't this precious.

This is Dennis Lind the bird whisperer,
the little chickadee flew into the garage at Shearys BBQ and the just gently got the little thing to trust him and after some Kodak moments it flew off.

Here is a one eyed owl at the Art on Fire the bird rescue people brought him.

A beautiful hawk.

A motley Raven.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Weekend Update

Girdwood Forest Fair
July 2nd, 3rd and 4th
Please come and see all the great artwork, talent, fun and me.
For directions: This is the first year I will be at the Girdwood Forest Fair with my own booth. I was a member of Girdwood Center for the Visual Arts for many years and sold quite a bit of my art through G.C.V.A. Now I'm getting my own booth Cabin Fever In Alaska not to be confused with Cabin Fever the gift shop on 4th avenue in downtown Anchorage.
My wonderful friend Mary McCoy was kind and gracious to let me stay at her house when I came to work at the gallery. We had great conversations and alot of fun together Mary is a small ball of energy with loads of enthusiasm and encouragement. Saddly she and George moved to Las Crusis Mew Mexico. NOTE: call Mary I have also camped out and slept in the gallery on occasion.
I gave up my membership at GCVA a little over a year ago for good reasons now I'm baaack.....

Yesterday I went to my encaustic group meeting AKIEA and barbecue at Sheary's house there were bicyclists from San Francisco, Scotland, Maine and her beau Nard from Colorado Springs, they were doing Alaska on bikes they were really neat group of people. I also met Dennis Lind his paintings are at the Anchorage Museum of History and Art at the Marks Brothers Cafe, they are red and fulled with energy and passion.

I have so much to do to get ready for the weekend, it's going to be fun and we are going to make money selling my original one-of-a-kind art peices and Peter has carved feathers galore which will fly off the shelves. Make this; the biggest Art Fair in Alaska part of your 4th of July fun!
I hope to see you there.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Hot off the Griddle Yin and Yang Ravens

Yin and Yang Ravens
Judy Vars
6" X 6"
encaustic wax
95.00 each or 180.00 for the pair
In many mythological stories all Ravens were once white When Noah sent the Raven forth it was the White Raven who didn't return so God punished him by turning then all black!

In Skokomish tribal legend, snow-white raven stole the sun, moon, stars, water and fire back from gray eagle at the request of the people. He hung the sun, moon and stars back up in the sky. He dropped the water, forming streams and lakes. He made fire available to the people, growing black from its smoke as he flew.

The black Raven is usually associated with the trickester and the creator, in North American native culture, able to pass between our world and the spirit world.

The raven either black or white brings the secrets of magic between our world and the spirit world.
Whether black or white the Raven is a powerful symbol and one I paint over and over.

Tonight is my night to stay up for the Summer Solstice, it's my personal tradition on the longest day of the year in the far North when the day is 19 hours 21 minutes long, I do not go to bed. On the longest night of the year December 21st I stay in my p.j. s unless someone insists I go out. Why? Just because it's my thing. This is the twilight right at sunset when the sun has sunk below the horizon and the blue spectrum is all the color I can see. It is worth staying up for.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Extra Extra Read All About It

It's me, blogging at Logan airport in Boston with 2 hours to spare before my plane leaves, the 4th Annual Encaustic Conference was a whirlwind of waxy adventures. I stayed at the dorms at Monterserrat with 3 other roommates, Patti, Diana, Lyllia, and me, all nice people. Patti said; she is going home and emptying out her head on her desk, that's a great description of my brain currently, I must do that also and sort through all the information we were given and experiences I had.

Artists who work with encaustics are a great and giving group. Joanne Mattera was everywhere all at once she was very nice and approachable (for the Queen Bee of the Encaustic World).This message stressed again and again is "We are artists first, who happen to use the medium of encaustic wax"

I could not come all the way to Beverly, Mass and not visit Salem, so I ditched one of my lectures and took the train to Salem a beautiful quaint walking town. I went to the Salem dungeon and watched a little play with the actual transcripts of a trial. It was more about mass hysteria, religious fervor, children being manipulated by adults and greedy people taking others land than it was about anyone actually being in league with the devil (although the spirit of avarice and hate were surely at work).
Over 150 were arrested and imprisoned, 5 died in prison, 14 women, 5 men and two dogs were hanged. Giles Cory who refused to plead guilty was crushed to death with rocks, they were not able to take his land. After that I visited the Peabody Museum, The House of the Seven Gabels, I saw the mother of all cemeteries where those poor souls who were hanged were buried, and I had my fortune told by a witchey woman, really not much worth reiterating and frankly a little of a ripp off just like dumping $30.00 into a Las Vegas slot machine and hoping for a huge payoff and getting nothing but a little diversion. Oh well.
That witch put a curse on me also........let me explain.

The next day I was talking to Sheary by the front of the college and inadvertently grabbed her backpack by mistake. I took it up to my room and tossed it on the bed and left for the lecture. Sheary went to use her cell phone and noticed her nap sack was missing and naturally panicked so the women in her vicinity were of course brought into the drama. She remembered that I was the last person she talked to and came looking for me, of course I was gone so my roomie opened the room and there it was! Sheary and Lilia know it was a silly mistake and anyone of us could have done it but others seemed not to believe that it happened that way. What an airhead I can be sometimes, it was very frustrating that I could not remember doing it and unfortunate indeed that in these types of situations others will believe what they want to believe. I had to laugh it off (as best i could) and hold my head up and enjoy the rest of the conference.
Lylia said STOP SMOKING! I said why did you say that and she told me of you link something like that to a traumatic event you will remember the message. Thanks Lillia now I think I can quit these fags once and for all.

My Critical Feedback by Joseph Carroll was quite interesting my critique came the last half hour of the day so I was not given the time and attention the people had earlier in the day and others wanted to ask him other questions like "Do you feel women are discriminated against in the industry?" excuse me?#! it was my floor time!
He said; my art belongs to a certain cultural spectrum and has a 70's feel example the Byzantine paintings of the era. I got some examples Rodarte Rick Owens both fashion designers and Dr Lakra a tattoo artist from Ocaxa, Mexico. My question of making my artwork more commercial so I can sell more he said, "artists hold for the culture a respite from the making of money and commercializm".

My post conference workshop Homage to Fayum given by Francisco Benitez was by far the highlight of the conference for me, I learned the techniques that the Ancient Greeks and the Fayum mummy portraits painters used. It was just like painting portraits with oils only you use a variety of heated tools like sculpters use, wood burning tools etc. They used a limited pallete. We had a live model, Francisco gave me and all of us helpful suggestions and loads of information about Greek Art in the short time we had him. He was very complementary of my portrait saying it' has a vulnerable mysterious quality (or something like that).

There was a gathering on Tuedsay night a barbeque with tons of good food it was at Julie's house in Salem WOW on the harbor next to a golf course lots of land handsome home and her studio was a so cool all kinds of antique chachkis, boxes and boxes of wonderful stuff. We all had studio envy.

So after taking the train from Beverly to Boston catching the subway orange line to the blue line, taking a shuttle to the airport, going through security, flying to Houston, Seattle, and Anchorage and driving to Beverly Lake I am home and blogging all about it.

The message I took home with me is: Be true to yourself and your vision. Write an artist statement about your artistic vision and/or process. Write it as if you have completed the body of work you dream of creating.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Raven Steals the Light
12" X 12"
Copper Leaf, Ephemera, Beeswax

Feet Fetish

12" X 12"

Encaustic Beeswax


24" X 36"


Raven Sleleton Man

36" X 48"

  • Encaustic Beeswax

Saturday, June 05, 2010

A Sampling of My Art Work

Wednesday I’m flying to Boston! for the Fourth Annual Encaustic Painting Conference at Montserrate College of Art. This is an example of my artwork for my post-conference workshop “Critical Feedback” with Joseph Carroll” . I am getting very excited and nervous. Joanne Mattera the organizer of this event the author to the encaustic bible The Art of Encaustic Painting e-mailed me and said “You will not be disappointed with Joseph’s critical feedback. He offers thoughtful and focused comments about one’s work.”
Mr. Carroll e-mailed me and requested my goals, ie one thing that you want from your work career and one thing that you might want me to comment on.
YIKES,Am I Nuts! It is not easy to take or really trust criticism, critiques or even compliments and praise from people especially family and friends. Just like that poor girl who sings like a scroungey cat in heat, but still her friends and family let her go on America's Got Talent ant and let Pierce Morgan tear her to shreads and embarrass herself. They just didn’t want to hurt her little feelings. So here I am putting it all out there, brave indeed.

For the Best Foot Foreword Show I am taking my Fayum portrait Yapitta.
I am very proud of her.

My other post workshop is Homage to Fayum by Alexander Masino his work is exquisite the realistic wax images and iconic images are what I love. It takes talent, practice and a patient love of encaustic to paint this way. This is going to be fanatastico I am going to learn so much from these two big ring leaders in the encaustic art arena that I have choosen to perform in.
This can only be good.

Thursday, June 03, 2010

How To Overcome Painters Block JUST DO IT!

"I do not know myself how I paint it. I sit down with a white board before the spot that strikes me. I look at what is before my eyes, and say to myself, that white board must become something." (Vincent van Gogh)
Painting is a faith, and it imposes the duty to disregard public opinion. (Vincent van Gogh)
This is one of at least 12 self portraits of the master and according to Wikipedia one of the most expensive paintings of all time in 1998 it sold for 71.5 million

Ah yes, Vincent Van Gogh, How I admire his earnest talent. The compulsion to paint even though people didn't get him and he did not sell his work, it was just what he had to do. Even though he walked the razors edge his passion for painting kept him going.
Call me crazy but I'd like some of the madness that drove Vincent to paint, paint, paint.