Monday, October 4, 2010

Reflections on Crater Lake 2010, part one: art show

My time at Crater Lake has come to an end, once again. I do not know whether I will return, and do not know what I am doing next. I was in a similar situation previous two times I made my exodus from this grand park. There is some sadness every time I turn in my badge and radio, and a combination of reflecting on the past and contemplating the future.

This season has been short (only a little over three months) but busy. Especially since August, I have been going almost non-stop. Among my many projects in this short time: the first-ever Crater Lake National Park staff art show. (First-ever as far as I know, anyway.)

I took the lead in organizing, with instrumental guidance and assistance from our dynamo of an Education Coordinator, Linda Hilligoss. Twelve staff artists displayed work in the show. Over 600 park visitors attended, by a very conservative estimate. Our efforts were documented in the Herald and News of Klamath Falls.

I was simultaneously honored to have my own work on display, and impressed that there was so much artistic talent in our staff. Once I announced my intentions across park headquarters, the artists started coming out of the woodwork, with captivating images to show me. To name a few: Fire Management Officer Greg Funderburk had mystical-looking photos of Crater Lake in the winter, with Wizard Island covered in snow and the lake shrouded in fog. Ranger Dave Harrison had skillfully rendered watercolor paintings of scenes from the coast. Lesley McClintock, an art teacher from California who volunteered this summer as a ranger at Crater Lake, had accurate and attractive illustrations of the park's geologic features and wildlife (including the spotted owl on our NPS flyer above; the Raven over Crater Lake is by yours truly.) I hope that the art show becomes an annual tradition.

Ross Wood Studlar and his artwork

My personal Artist Statement for this show:

“At Crater Lake, one is awed by the forces of nature. Volcanoes, glaciers, earthquakes, blizzards, lightning storms and forest fires have all left their mark upon this landscape, and made it what it is today. The mythic beasts of my illustrations interpret the powers of nature metaphorically. I take some inspiration from Native American Legends, as native peoples are great interpreters of earth's might and wonder. On display is the three-part “Llao vs Skell,” an interpretation of the Klamath Legend on how Crater Lake formed. Also there are scenes from my book The Raven and The Crayfish. It is an original story that re-envisions the mythic guardian of Crater Lake. My “Thunderbird Over Crater Lake” is inspired by a lightning storm which sent I and a boat full of tourists to hide in the shelter on Wizard Island. “The Unlucky Pika” is a tribute to the cute but heat-intolerant member of the rabbit family. With Global Warming, the Pika's survival is in question. My drawings are pen-and-ink or scratchboard, which I scan and modify digitally.”

"Thunderbird Over Crater Lake"

Coming up, some reflections on the season as a whole, to conclude my recent string of Crater Lake-related posts.

No comments:

Post a Comment