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Official Islamorada Visitor Information from a local point-of-view

Call an Islamorada Vacation Specialist! 800-FAB-KEYS 305-664-4503

Purple sky sunset through palm fronds

Island Fest Arts & Crafts Show

Islamorada 31st Annual Island Fest –
Saturday & Sunday, April 1 & 2, 2023
Founders Park, Islamorada

The Islamorada Chamber of Commerce
Announced Derek DeYoung as the
3oth Annual Island Fest Poster Artist

Presented by the Islamorada Chamber of Commerce, the two-day Island Fest will offer live music, gourmet cuisine, vintage cars, and plenty of fine art and crafts. The festival takes place on Saturday and Sunday, April 1 & 2, at Founders Park.

Derek DeYoung - Tarpon at Play

Recognized as last year’s poster artist was painter Derek DeYoung whose work Tarpon at Play captured the joyful nature of this powerful fish. As a boy, Derek dreamt of one day living in the Florida Keys. Today, he spends the winter months in Big Pine Key and has done so for the last nine years. Beyond just living the island life, Derek worked extremely hard to master the art of catching flats gamefish on a fly, as well as capturing them in his unique and captivating style in acrylic paint on his canvases. “To be named poster artist for Island Fest has meant the world to Derek, as he truly considers the Florida Keys his home and is so honored to represent his fellow Keys artists at Island Fest,” says his wife and partner, Janelle.

Derek was born on a bayou near the shores of Lake Michigan where his love of fishing was ignited. Over the years his art has veered from the classical fishing art, placing more importance on using a unique style and palette. Using oil paints on canvas, he artfully captures all the subtle intricacies fish possess; their patterns, dimensions and textures. In his artwork DeYoung is constantly pushing the limits by painting fish in beautiful and original ways.

“Ever since I can remember, my connection to the world and the people around me has been through my artwork. I was an average student at best in a family of overachievers academically, but my ability to draw and paint always kept my mom from worrying about me too much.”

 

Painting by Ana Monsanto

Also, among the participants was Ana Monsanto, returning after winning ‘Best in Show’ in 2018. Ana, a Ukrainian native, moved to Miami at a very young age. “Just like everyone that comes to Florida, I fell in love with the ocean and the beautiful beaches of Florida. They have been my inspiration for my artwork.” Ana began painting when she was a teenager and later took drawing and painting classes at Florida International University. Her paintings are made with acrylic paint and custom pigment on canvas. “Painting water and the movement of water is what I enjoy the most”, says Ana. The little details and memories Ana has from freediving and surfing can be seen in her art. Her latest collection features heavy impasto style barnacles and corals. “You can almost pick the corals off the canvas. The texture is thick and three-dimensional.”

 

Painting by Linda McQuinn

Our third featured artist was Linda McQuinn. Linda has lived in several beautiful places across the country. Currently she is living in Pine Island, Florida. Linda has always done some sort of art, but started painting full time over five years ago. She is self-taught working predominantly with oil and acrylic. “I love bold color and like to experiment with texture and pattern to create whimsical paintings inspired by nature and experiences. Painting is my passion and I hope that is reflected in my work.”

 

Admission to Island Fest is free and on-site parking is available for a $5 donation. The Islamorada Chamber of Commerce encourages the public to “Keep the Scene Green” and bring your own reusable drink container to reduce plastic use during the event. Events will take place rain or shine. Plan to bring your own lawn chairs and blankets for a comfortable, fun-filled day. For more information, call the Islamorada Chamber of Commerce at 305.664.4503.

Back to Island Fest Information