For James Paradiso, Starbucks is not just a place to fill up on coffee. It's also home to an artist's eye, or in particular, his eye.
Foto Diparadiso, a photography exhibit at the , celebrates its final day in the store, before moving over to the Highland Park Senior Center for two months.
Paradiso, a Highland Park resident of 26 years, said the exhibit, which showcases his photography on greeting cards, is a win-win for Starbucks and for his work. Check out his website here.
"From Starbucks perspective, it’s a way to support local artists. It’s a form of sales promotion," he said. "For me, it's a form of sampling, no different than if you go into your grocery store and sample a piece of cheese."
The "sampling" part is what makes this exhibit unique. If you like one of his photograph-greeting cards, you can literally take it down and keep it, for free.
Paradiso spent much of his career in education materials, consulting and teaching. Now, he says, the role of a visual artist has become his retirement since May 2008.
"When a good friend was diagnosed with cancer, I suddenly and unexpectedly began to paint," he said. "I work to fill a temporal, spatial, psycho-social holes and on good days, enjoy the flow."
When asked to elaborate, the English, philosophy and business degree-holder said, "I don’t really know what that means, but that’s okay because that’s my cache."
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