Bridgette Guerzon Mills | The Fox, encaustic mixed media, 8×8 inches
This fox piece has gone through several iterations. The first one, I did a transfer of a vintage clip art drawing of a fox and I left the fox black and white. Then I decided to make the fox red and I thought it was done. Then I decided to make it a Gray Fox after I read an essay and a particular line about a Gray Fox hit me. But then I decided the painting needed a Red Fox, so back it is to red.
At any rate, below are the words that I read about the gray fox that I liked, but I am going to say that it relates to the red fox as well. A fox is a fox, red or gray.
The naturalist in me is like, no, they are different animals with different habitats! I mean, a gray fox can climb a tree. That’s impressive. I’ve never seen a fox in a tree and if I saw that, I think it would be frightening. The red fox lives on several continents, but the gray fox is found in North and Central America. So yes, they are different. And I respect that, but I needed a red fox for the painting, and the painting’s needs won out.
The essay I read was written by Pablo Deustua Jochamowitz called “Meeting the Gray Fox” in Nature, Love, Medicine: essays on Wildness and Wellness, edited by Thomas Lowe Fleischner. The writer is a therapist and he was writing about how getting back outside helped one of his patients get back in touch with his true self, or reawakened something in him that had been dormant for a long time. Within the quote below is a quote from Gary Snyder’s writing. Who I now have on my very long to-read list.
“Wild essence is like ‘a gray fox trotting off through the forest, ducking behind bushes, going in and out of sight.’ Let’s each go into the forest- silently and in awe- to find our gray fox.”
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