What Draws You In?

What Draws You In?

Recently, Pam and I hopped in our car and headed to Perkins Cove in beautiful Ogunquit Maine to paint. Although the cove is just a little over 12 miles down the road from us, we hadn't seen the ocean in awhile. We had spent the winter and the first few weeks of spring, painting the snowy New England landscape around our neighborhood and up into the mountains of Jackson New Hampshire and Jeffersonville Vermont. So as we neared Perkins cove and caught our first glimpse of Oarweed Cove in the distance, our hearts started racing with excitement.

We walked out towards the western end of the Marginal Way and both painted 8x10 canvases of a sparkling sea before the sun sank behind the steep prominence of Israel Hill Rd. It was a joy to be out painting the new season and to be filled with the sights and the sounds and the smells that is everything New England coastline.

I don't know of anyone who isn't attracted to the ocean and mesmerized by the pull of its ever changing tides. One moment it lulls you into a calm reflective state and then one of excitement and awe as low tide gives way to the reckless and persistent manner of a high tide pushing its way into shore. Its always a wonder to behold and it literally draws me in. Besides the beauty of seeing, there is also the sounds and smells that add to the excitement of it all. Crashing waves, seagulls and the salty ocean air, all make for a perfect recipe to delight the senses.

As a painter, I can be intoxicated by the vastness of a scene or I can become enamored with a more intimate and close up view of a few rocks and the swirl of the ocean tide. Because the ocean is constantly moving, it's a subject that keeps me on my toes. It's always a fun subject to tackle. Even when I walk away at the end of a painting session with something that will probably be put in the 'miss' pile, it's always a learning experience and a great day.

I'm looking forward to teaching my 3-day plein air workshop along the Marginal Way June 12-14 and there still a few spots remaining. The Marginal Way is a breathtaking scenic coastal walk that is just over a mile long. It is paved for easy walking and there are 39 public benches that span its entirety. The views are spectacular and offer the plein air painter a rare treat of ocean and rocky shoreline that will really draw you in!