I opened Fine Art Academy of the Palm Beaches in order to teach art with a single standard like one would Math or English. In my graduate thesis paper I ask, “Does poetry have to be written in unreadable cursive, like a doctor’s signature to be expressive?” I can read Hamlet in Times New Roman “typewriter” font and I will understand it significantly better than if it is sloppily misspelled in horribly messy handwriting.
I have come to the conclusion that individual style is most effectively expressed through content and subject matter. Everyone’s handwriting, and therefore brushwork, is already as unique as a fingerprint. In the ancient Chinese oracle, “The Book of Changes,” the whole point is to discover the unchanging within change. The Classical standard persists. I call realistic, classical form “meeting the viewer half way." I see it as imperative that this generation help art reattain its task of being like the oral history of Africans. Does life imitate art? Only if art returns to its duty of imitating life.
In China, they drew bamboo, not only to draw bamboo, but to study the wind. Many seek emotion and expressiveness and this is most effectively attained through taking some time to learn to see and draw better. Being expressive is equally important to saying something meaningful. Individual style is revealed through content and story telling, not obsessing on style alone at the cost of substance.
All art is made up of abstract passages and abstract content. Pure abstraction has taken elements out of context and art has lost meaning for many. I find there to be a more holistic vision that is being misportrayed as more difficult than it is seemingly to intimidate people out of expressing themselves. I find it is by "abstracting" or breaking art down into steps and focusing on aspects one-by-one, people can gain a greater understanding and can have greater success. By implementing the classical, realistic approach with "DaVinci's grid," an underdrawing/underpainting, glazes of transparent color, etc., anyone can learn how to draw better and make the highest quality fine art.
Open studio Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Morning and afternoon sessions:
9 a.m, - noon and 2 p.m. - 5.
$50.oo per three hour session. Blocks of eleven classes available for the price of ten. Attend whenever you want; first-come first-serve. Online consultations available $100.oo per half hour.
Visit Fine Art Academy of the Palm Beach's Facebook page and look at the student work and you will see the finest drawing and painting in the Palm Beaches. I have refused to make the school a not-for profit to get tax breaks in order not to be beholden to the pitfall that has turned the other art schools in this area into bureaucracies run by committees. Orwell said, "Insincerity is the enemy of clarity." I prefer to be sincere and clear, shooting for the highest quality art and the most fun, open, meaningful experience. Come to the dark side. We have cookies.
View some of James's work here: https://www.facebook.com/FineArtPalmBeach