Art Journals, sketches, TV sketches, watercolors. Read: guilty pleasures, fixations and obsessions.

Posts tagged “Presumpscot River


030213 earthlight

Acrylics on 8×10″ canvas board. There are probably a half-dozen abandoned, gessoed over paintings under this one. Windham, ME. 2 March 2013

Still feeling my way around with acrylic paints — I started this right after gessoing over an awful self-portrait. It was dusk outside and the clouds were striated and slightly illuminated (from God knows what, we haven’t really seen a sunset in days!) This started out being a “serious” study of the poplars on the Presumpscot River bank behind the house, but then I added the moon and it evolved into an earth-like planet.

I wrote a sci-fi short story called “Blame” which stemmed from a dream I had years ago where I was stranded on the Moon (yes, that was some dream…) and was sifting through piles of beautiful depression glass. In the dream, I could see the Earth looming in space but the piles of sugary glass were even more compelling. Hmmm. Maybe my next not-so-serious study subject?

The Gauntlet

Watercolor on 140 lb., 8.5 x 11″ Strathmore Visual Journal. Westbrook, Maine. 1 June, 2012.

Nothing says “carnival” to me more than the scent of fried dough. It smells delicious, and I’m sure that when the oil is new, the result is very good. But, ugh — I tried it once a number of years ago and even though I’m a hound dog for anything covered with sugar, the dough was heavy and greasy and sat unpleasantly in my stomach. My friend and I were walking off an excellent meal of Indian food last weekend, when we happened upon a small carnival in a park by the Presumpscot River in Westbrook, ME. Full of saag paneer, I was able to run the gauntlet of carnival delicacies without succumbing to any temptation. Until I got to the milkshake stand, that is.

Looking around at the carnival sights as I contentedly sipped my chocolate shake, I realized how extraordinarily crisp the lights of Jensen’s Fried Dough stand lit their flags against the night sky. I had my sketch book with me, but didn’t feel comfortable whipping it out and starting a sketch. So, I snapped a photo and sketched it at home later that evening. I wasn’t thrilled with the sky rendering, so I started another version with a different palette and here is a view of the comparison. Although I like the sky in the second attempt, I think the first sketch has more personality.

Looking Up

Watercolor and ink on 5″x8″ Moleskine. 4 April 2012.
Feeling a little guilty for spending this beautiful April afternoon painting and listening
to music. But, only just a little. I’ve often sketched and painted this house on the Presumpscot River that we’ve been living in for 27 years and never feel that I quite capture the look of the vergeboard. Looking up at the roofline, I marvel at the workmanship and simultaneously see dollar signs when I see how it needs to be repaired.

Presumpscot River at Bridge Street, Westbrook, Maine

Downstream view of the Presumpscot River at Bridge Street in Westbrook, ME.
On errands, I couldn’t resist stopping for a few minutes to scribble in the scene,
leaving the color for later. Spring is definitely in the air!
Watercolor and ink on 5″x8″ Moleskine watercolor notebook.