Saturday, October 10, 2009

Return to the blogosphere

I've been gone for 5 months, the result of a nerve problem in my right arm excerbated by working at computers. Things have improved enough for me to get back to blogging (and some other things), so I hope to recover the good friends I made before. I was able to continue to paint and that's a very good thing even though it was at a slower pace which gave me time for more thought and study. Here are some recent pieces.

Fern Glade in Sprague Woods
Oil on Canvas 18" X 25"
I've painted this before--the location is on the Sprague Estate land in Cape Elizabeth Maine, a few miles from where I live. The very wealthy Sprague family has set aside a large parcel of land for preservation. Much of it is mature woodland, and a portion is also used for farming. There are many treasures here. This is one of my favorite spots especially in low light. My first painting was in landscape format, but a slightly different location inspired me to make a vertical piece in which I could show some sky.

Low Tide at Ferry Beach
Oil on Canvas 20" X 16"
This is a small beach in Scarborough, Maine a few miles from my house. It's on the road to Prout's Neck, a section of town in which winslow Homer lived for many years. The beach is quite flat and at low tide is very wide (not so at high tide however). So the little dinghy in the foreground just sits flat in the exposed sand. But right at the waterline a good-sized lobster boat lies on its side. I asked an old guy there how come the boat was left like this. He said, "Time to scrape the hull." I guess at the next low tide the boat will be lying on its other side for the same reason. The afternoon light produced a pink glow on the sand and in the shallow water. That's Pine Point across the way and the ocean beyond.

Street on Higgins Beach
Oil on Canvas 11" 14"

Higgins Beach is a small beach enclave in Scarborough. It's another shallow water beach that's more than a hundred yards wide at low tide and non-existent at high tide. But it has warmish water for Maine and the surfing is great all year. The community was a bit funky but now is becoming gentrified with real estate prices through the roof. Nonetheless, good light yields some nice inspiration which I hope has produced an attractive painting here.
More soon, I promise!


Marian Fortunati said...

Jack you're REALLY back!!!

These paintings are fabulous!! I'm so glad you are feeling better and even happier to see your wonderful work.

I think we're all lucky that the nerve problem you had didn't affect your painting... except maybe to make it even better!!

All three of those paintings are so moody and so different I don't know which is my favorite... Guess I'll just have to go back and forth looking at all of them!!

Jack Riddle said...

Marian--thanks for the nice comments and your enthusiasm! Moody is probably a good word for these, as I do brood a lot over my work. BTW-I wish the photos were better. I'm pleased enough with these paintings that I can honestly say "they're better than they look."

Cooper Dragonette said...

I love this stretch of the road down to Higgins!

Barbara Pask said...

Hi Jack, Welcome back. I kept checking in, so sorry to hear of your health issues but I'm glad things are improving. All three of these painting are wonderful, the problem sure didn't affect your ability to paint. I'll keep checking in, so glad to have you back.

Jack Riddle said...

Yeah, Cooper, you know that place I'm sure. Higgins Beach used to be more interesting with its funky houses and such, but it's still one of my favorite places

Jack Riddle said...

Barb--thanks! I hope to post every couple of weeks. One benefit from my experience was I was forced to slow down . As a result, I could give more thought to what I was doing and hopefully come up with better work. I plan to maintain that discipline.

Anonymous said...

All wonderful paintings. Glad you're back! Continue to heal.


Jack Riddle said...

Thanks, Paz. I checked out your site again and I love the photos of NYC. The guy with the balloons would make a great painting!

Lisa Marquis-Bradbury said...

Hi Jack, I really love the Sprague Woods painting. You captured that golden light so beautifully. I also enjoyed looking at your paintings from Mexico. The light down there looks really nice. That might be the place for us Mainers in the winter!

Jack Riddle said...

Lisa--thank you. As for Mexico, that's why we go there. I think I picked up your site from Frank Gardner's blog. I've done some workshops with him and we have painted together in the field. Recommend Mexico for any painter and especially, if you get to know him, Frank

Lisa Marquis-Bradbury said...

Hi Jack, In regards to Frank, I was blown away by his work. The clarity of color and his brush strokes. It must be great painting with him. Maybe someday!