Monthly Archives: July 2015

Not a Hudson River School Painter

Two people at this event have commented that I paint like a Group of Seven painter. I’ve been perplexed along with being utterly delighted. Very few non-painters in the US have any idea who these brilliant Canadian painters were. I adore them, not only for their mastery of paint handling and composition, but because their inspiration […]

An Edward Hopper dream

I sometimes drive down Maine roads and think to myself, “There’s an Edward Hopper house.” It will be sitting atop a rise, surrounded by old trees, paint peeling, nothing much changed since 1930. I never imagined I might stay in a Hopper painting, but here I am. The owner of this rooming house—who might have modeled for Hopper in […]

Stretching the limits

Encaustic uses hot wax as the paint binder instead of linseed oil. It can be lovely and mysterious, but with its warmers and pots it’s hardly portable. When I heard that an artist was using it en plein air at Olana, I had to go look. Maria Kolodziej-Zincio visited Poland several years ago. Members of her […]

Taking up the drink

I suffered from dehydration last week. It manifests as Charley Horse when I’m sleeping. I can shelter my painting from the brilliant sun, but not my self. My friend Barbara Vandervort, who is a Civil War reenactor, told me about a beverage called switchel. “It’s quite refreshing, and has lots of electrolytes. Not that our ancestors knew that part, […]

You gotta show up

When an auction is going badly—as it did on Saturday—my sympathies go to the organizers. For many of these organizations, the event represents the culmination of months of work, and the proceeds represent a big chunk of their budget. Yes, we artists can grumble about losing three days from our schedules, but unless nobody shows […]

Of bees and bandages

While this is my first time participating in Olana Plein Air, I’ve painted at the site several times. Usually, it’s a choice of painting well or chatting with friends I seldom see. Since yesterday dawned misty and grey, I figured it was the perfect time to catch up with my pals. Oddly enough, for as much as […]

Is it time to panic?

Yesterday morning I left for Plein Air Olana, at Frederic Church’s estate on the Hudson River. I usually post my blog early in the morning, but the Bangor Daily News blog feed was glitching. No problem, I thought, and drove as far as McDonald’s in Brunswick, where I bought a dollar coffee and used their internet to publish. […]

Slow down, you move too fast

I walk less in the summer, simply because I don’t have time. Still, I always manage to lose weight. My doctor suggested—sensibly enough—that I’m happier and more relaxed when I’m in Maine than when I’m in New York. Over 40 years, I figure I’ve driven about a million miles. Most of those are highway miles, […]

Boys will be boys

Last Friday I took my family to Mt. Battie. Aaron loves climbing on rocks and has the scars to prove it. Laura was content to sit quietly and draw with me. The middle-aged people could fend for themselves. Dwight, the youngest, tends to be cautious, so I seldom worry about him. I was rather surprised, therefore, to […]

Baked beans, the awful truth

I’m a lousy cook. A friend advised me, “Remember: if it starts to burn, turn the black knobs to the left.” That was after I made her scrambled eggs and toast and managed to burn them both. I was invited to the new Riverbrook Preserve in Waldoboro for the Medomak Valley Land Trust’s annual potluck […]