Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Cape Cod Boat Yard

I started off with a sketch of two boats and set up to paint them. The yard was filled with boats stored for the hurricane. The sun was blazing, it was hot and there was no shade. I quit and brought my sketch home.
My best feeling when painting is to get lost in the painting. This is what happened and the painting kept growing as it took on a life of its own. This is what I like; paint something you know, only imagine it. I ended up with 3 boats, 3 people, a shop and a wood pile. The original two boats were white and blue but you can see what happens on an afternoon with a paint brush.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Cape Cod Sand Dunes

While the winds of Irene howled yesterday, I completely finished the Sunday NYTimes and painted a sand dune scene. The power when on and off but came back and stayed on. We had little rain. Lots of tree limbs and leaves were strewn about the yard but no damage. It was nice to say goodnight to Irene.
We have lots of sand dunes with paths down to the beach. This is one from my imagination with some people interested in something in the sand.

Saturday, August 27, 2011


As I turned up Depot St. I saw this old Cape Cod house behind some high overgrown bushes. The grasses were high and yellow and there was a haunting feel to a place that had housed happier times. It is a big house. I pulled up across the street and sketched and painted the place. I put the red wagon in as a note of sadness. It was a hot and humid day and soon the bugs found me. I think I finished in less than an hour and got away. The painting has lots of 'wonder what happened' secrets.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Wychmere Boats

Yesterday was a beautiful day for painting. I was on the commercial dock in Harwich Port painting this scene and had plenty of company. A lot of people make the wrong turn and want directions. The boats are tied to each other and the largest was a wooden yawl with great lines. When I was in college I used to sail a 34ft yawl along the New England coast. I knew very little about navigation but was ok as long as I could see the shore and read my maps. There were some surprises with fog. Cape Cod is pretty safe for sailing with little experience because it is all sand bars. Maine is a different story. Our yawl was also wooden but always in great shape. Lots of stories from those days.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Main Street, Harwich Port, Cape Cod

Main Street is busy with shoppers heading to Dr. Gravity's Kite Shop. A colorful spot that is the destination of every kid under 10 years. The sidewalk is filled with wonderful things and there are many flags on the building. Parents should be warned of the risk walking their young ones. It is a must stop.
While painting from across the street, I was visited by locals, became a part of a movie by a crew filming a wedding day, and was critiqued by a lovely lady who did lots of painting but now just enjoys. We had a very lively discussion about plein air art. She was interested in my dappled lighting.
It was a beautiful Cape Cod day.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

A Cape Cod Day

A glorious day to just sit on the beach at Cape Cod. Lots of families come to our beach down the road. They play hard, leave late and sleep well. The beaches are clean and everyone gets along. The ice cream truck sets off a brouhaha with scrambling kids lining up.
Today was a clear day, despite a weather forecast of rain. No one seems to be able to predict weather on Cape Cod. At 5PM, the life guards leave and the wagons get converted to tables with lots of goodies; then the wine comes out. Does life get any more simple; just the basics here on Cape Cod beach.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Cape Cod Sky

There were gigantic tall clouds hanging over the bay yesterday morning. I was down on the beach sand and painted this scene. The sky kept changing with the clouds going from defined billowy cumulus types to softer, more blurry shapes as I painted them.
When you paint a sky scene you simplify the rest of the landscape in the painting. There were grasses and moored boats but I did not dare paint them into the scene. I have the sketches for future use. The sailboats in this painting act as a counter for informal balance in the composition.
It turned into a glorious day.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

I Can Do It Myself

This is a scene from the Herring River on Cape Cod. I have painted the little fishing shack that tilts back from the water on many occasions. It is right down the road from my sister. There used to be a pianist practicing classic music with the windows open. Many little ones come to try out fishing for the first time and then, there are the little boys who crab. They set out their trap with a chicken bone and hover over it awaiting a catch. Plenty of reasons to paint here.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Rock Harbor Repair

Several years ago I painted a ship in Rock Harbor. I liked it and still have it on my wall. Returned there last week with pretty much the same group of painters and did this watercolor of a working ship that was in for repairs. It was a beautiful Cape Cod morning with sun and breeze. I finished the entire painting on site. Despite getting there early, the party fishing boats were all at sea and the place was pretty quiet except for the searching sea gulls.