Styles Repeat Notes
In my long journey as a painter I have observed that styles repeat themselves, not just in fashion, but in art too.
Back in the 70’s when I was in art school the rage was to present paintings with drips and areas unfinished. I have noticed a fair number of those lately. There was a lot of airbrush work being done with abstracts too at that time so I expect that will resurface too at some point. As the saying goes, there is nothing new really, just repeats and reworks of former styles and explorations over the centuries.
I don’t really see a problem with these repetitions unless you happen to be on the tail end of the trend. That is the problem with trying to be in the cool crowd, either in fashion or art. By the time a painter realizes that this is the “new” style of painting, it is no longer new. I know emerging painters who change their style like underwear. Each new workshop they attend makes them want to paint like the teacher, literally. They scour the internet to see the latest from well known painters and latch on for the ride. This copy, repeat style of painting goes on endlessly and has for a long time. This happens to me and many other professional painters who sell our work online. I will begin to paint a subject and format size, putting them on social media, and within a week I will see the same subject and format repeated by others. I recently put my rustic paintings on rough wood in a gallery show. A few of them sold. In the next show at the same gallery, others had added their paintings on rustic wood, duplicating mine.
When you put your work out into the public on social media and galleries, you will have almost immediate style repeaters for your ideas. It happens all the time. All you can do is to be yourself and continue to grow and evolve in a natural way. You can either be an innovator without fear of being different, or you can be a trend follower, who hangs on, hoping to catch part of the trend before it is over.
When I was a paint out artist, the trends were painfully evident. Those artists who painted out of subjects that were popular, who used different palettes, whose styles were too refined or detailed, were shunned by the trendy at any given time. I would walk around the wet room and see painting after painting with almost identical palettes and styles, because that was, or is popular with plein air gurus. Without signatures they would have been indiscernible.
I think trying to be a trendy artist must take a huge amount of energy. I don’t think I could keep up with being cool. In many ways, I consider myself to be so lucky to be just a country painter. I live in the woods. I have an ancient house trailer but a wonderful studio. I rarely go anywhere unless it is to the nearby town or a couple of residencies a year. I don’t have cool clothes, or a cool car. I do have the best art supplies money can buy. I have a great life as an untrendy, unstylish painter.
More musings for artists and collectors to come…..
I haven’t tried this one yet but it looks so good I can’t wait to.
SHRIMP & CRAB BITES From the Land O Lakes Newsletter
A hash brown crust adds a new twist to these savory seafood morsels.
Preparation time: 10 min Baking time: 30 min
Yield: 16 servings
1 1/2 cups refrigerated hash brown potatoes
2 tablespoons LAND O LAKES® Butter, melted
1 (8-ounce) container chive and onion flavored cream cheese
4 ounces (1 cup) LAND O LAKES® Swiss Cheese, shredded
1 (6-ounce) can crab meat, drained, cartilage removed, flaked
1 (4-ounce) package frozen cooked salad shrimp, thawed, drained
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
Italian parsley leaves, if desired
Salad shrimp, if desired
Heat oven to 425°F. Combine all crust ingredients in small bowl. Press into bottom of ungreased 8-inch square baking pan. Bake for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, combine all filling ingredients except 1/4 cup cheese in medium bowl; mix well. Spread mixture over hot, partially baked potato layer. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until cheese mixture is set. Let stand 5 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Garnish each piece with parsley and shrimp, if desired. Serve warm or at room temperature.