Saturday, May 30, 2015

Guilford Docks - May 2015

Greetings to All,

Eleven artists painted and one visited.We found a hazy atmosphere that lingered through most of he morning. As I arrived just before 9, two rangers from the Fish and Wildlife Service brought a small boat to the float on the east end, picked up gear, and headed out to band terns in the Faulkner's breeding colony. In the river, a flock of gulls competed for the left-overs from a squadron of ospreys that whirled over the shoal water, first spotting their fish from the tops of masts. Those boat decks are going to need regular wash-downs!

Denise stayed on the east end for an organic view of the morning. Sally and Keiko found more mixed views of the stream through the marsh behind the sluice gate. Betsey started out near Sally, but the no-see-ems drove her to move back to the east end. Everyone else worked in the dock area - Pam (who left early), both Jays, Bob, Tina, Judy, and I. Gayle dropped by to chat for a while.

About half-way through the morning, the sky began to spritz a bit, but not enough to mess with our paintings. The bugs were a problem, but we shared the bug juice around and toughed it out. Then we ignored any byo lunches that we had brought and instead visited the Little Stone House for lunch. The lobster rolls were to die for, and I didn't hear any complaints about the other offerings that also looked very appealing.

Sometimes, even with two or three cuts at the group photo, you just have to let it go. Plenty of pics without it.

For the month of June, I have us scheduled as follows:

June 4 - Clinton Landing - behind the town hall
      11 -  Stony Creek Docks
     18  -  Flo Gris
     25  -  Rain Date for Flo Gris -- Otherwise Circle Beach/Neck Road boat launch
               with a falling tide through the morning

Guilford Docks



Wednesday, May 27, 2015


Greetings to All,

Any time you finish a painting that you started outside or completed in the studio from your sketch in the field -- in fact any time you have any painting you would like to share, if you send me an image, I'll post it -- along with any comments you might want to make. Maybe you just like it or you feel it represents growth for you or you can't quite figure out what isn't working, or you just want some feedback from other artists... there's no reason not to use this forum for follow up, critique, or just to share your vision. And, of course, you know you also may just comment constructively on a prior post by clicking on the comments link at the bottom of the post...

Since I wimped out and left early last week, I shot photos of the paintings earlier than usual. Recognizing that Tina always finishes in the field, I asked her to send me an image of the completed painting. Here it is, with her comments:

                      "Not crazy about this one .Maybe because I hear pounding when I look at it!"

Call to Paint - 28 May 2015 - 9 AM

Greetings to All,

Let's try Guilford Docks. The threat of showers seems to have mostly dried up, and if the wave comes through faster than expected, we might even get some sun. Well, that's probably a bit too hopeful... They're still talking about the possibility of a stray thunderstorm. So probably cloudy with not much breeze from the south and mid-60's. That should work.

They usually have picnic tables, and it's been feeling like summer, so if you're inclined, byo.


Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Connecticut Watercolor Society 75th Annual Exhibition

Greetings to All,

I was beginning to wonder if the announcement would ever come, even though I had it on good authority that there would be a show in New Haven in June of this year. Now at last, it has been announced.

John Slade Ely House, Trumbull Street, New Haven
June 13 through July 12, 2015
Juror:  John Massimino

Receiving:  Monday, June 8, 12:30 - 3:30 PM and 6:30 - 7:30 PM                
                    Tuesday, June 9, 9:30 AM to 12:30 PM
Notification:  Wednesday, June 10 after 5 PM - Check ONLINE at
Reception:  Sunday, June 21,  2 to 5 PM
Entry Fees:  Members - $15 for one or two paintings; Non-members - $20 for first, $35 for second

This promises to be the last time that CWS shows in this beautiful venue, since the John Slade Ely House is being sold. Let's hope that that CWS continues to bring their annual exhibition to New Haven every other year, in spite of this loss.

I've not yet posted a paint-out for this week, because the forecast still looks tentative. It is looking less unfriendly as we get closer. Let's see what they're saying tomorrow.


Friday, May 22, 2015

Summer Schedule

Greetings to All,

I guess it's time to assemble our summer schedule. I've begun to lay it out, but I know that some of you have or know of private places which can be special venues for us to paint. If you have a pleasant spot that you would like to share, or if you know of a place where you might help us gain access, this would be a good time to set it up and let me know. We would not expect you to provide refreshments. We all are accustomed to bringing our own. What we're interested in is the scenery and of course the camaraderie that goes with sharing a special place.

Please give me a heads up soon if you are thinking about hosting the group. We can work out the details together.


Thursday, May 21, 2015

Hammonasset - West Side Swan Pond - May 2015

Greetings to All,

When I arrived at Hammonasset, I was confronted with a huge expanse of construction fence beginning at the turn into our painting spot. The driveway was blocked off, so I turned into the West Beach parking area. It's just a short walk in to the pond and stream, but things were unkempt. It looked like there had been very heavy foot traffic all around the water, and there were broken branches and trash apparent everywhere. But I decided there was enough inspiration to paint, so I fetched my gear from the car. Tina and Betsey agreed, and we all set up to paint. Ultimately, we had eight painters - we three and Anne, John, Tom, Jane, and Pam. While I was talking with Pam, the pile-drivers began hammering, so she said she was heading off to paint elsewhere and would return later.

The rest of us hunkered down and tried to ignore the noise, which kept up with periodic short breaks through the morning. A swan courted us for handouts and finally found a regular visitor who came through.  The swan mounted a solid defense of the pond, driving off three geese that had landed. His mate was stolid on the nest across the pond. Anne kept imagining that the swan was about to chase us away from the water's edge, and she did a quick sketch of him keeping an eye on me as I moved around.

By 10:30, I decided I was finished with my painting, and Betsey said she was calling hers finished also. So I whiled away some time shooting photos and chatting. But the sun had pretty much gone into hiding, and the breeze was cutting up. And the noise was hammering. So Betsey, Anne, and I packed up and called it quits, leaving four artists still hard at work and forgetting all about Pam. That's why there is no group photo today, and why most of the paintings are not in a finished state.

I've not had time to think about next week yet. Maybe something in Guilford. Do you have any suggestions?

Hammonasset Swan Pond