Leslie Squared at ART by KATY

artbykaty

Tonight at 4 pm starts the soft launch of the Leslie Squared show (OK, I admit, I haven’t figured out how to make the squared symbol on my laptop yet) at ART by KATY. The show features oil paintings by Leslie Anderson and me, Leslie Landrigan. Both of us are married to Dans and both of us paint landscapes, so voila!

Tonight (July 6) is DIS Friday in Stonington, and Katy Allgeyer is holding a reception for Leslie Squared at her ART by KATY gallery at 22 Weed Field Rd.

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The Art By Katy gallery at 22 Weed Field Rd.

Here’s Katy two days before the Friday party:

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Katy Allgeyer in celebratory Fourth of July fashion.

Katy has done a great job promoting the Leslie Squared Show at ART by KATY. We’re in the Bangor Daily News, the Ellsworth American and the Island Advantages.

My Dan and his family, visiting Deer Isle at the time, dropped by the Art By Katy gallery on Wednesday for a peek at the paintings, a glass of wine and some very smart edibles. I believe they were duly impressed by the rustic charm of the gallery.

Katy is relaunching the gallery after a hiatus of several years. She’s worked really hard to make it a very appealing space, and I’m excited to be part of her  reopening!

At the Gallery

Here’s a peek at one of my paintings in the show:

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Acadian Horseback, oil on canvas, 16″ by 20″

And here’s a peek at one of Leslie Anderson’s paintings:

The big ART by KATY opening pARTy will start the next night, Saturday, July 7, from 4-7 pm. There’ll be more wine, more smart edibles, fun and interesting people as well as oil paintings by someone named Leslie.

Leslie and I, by the way, both started out doing watercolors, and we’ve both branched out into oils. Which is what you’ll see at the show, which runs until July 26.

So be there or be squared!

A Struggle With Blue and Orange on Day Seventeen

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It may be a created memory, but years ago I read somewhere that John Singer Sargent said all painting is based on blue and orange.

Reflections Rocks and Water by John Singer Sargent. Man, that guy could paint

I’ve looked it up on the internet, but can’t find the quote. Still, I’m a huge fan of blue and orange.

Fortunately Dan (my husband) owns a pair of blue suspenders and an orange chamois shirt (from L.L. Bean, of course). When he puts it on to go hiking I make sure my cell phone is charged. I will take lots of pictures and maybe I’ll get a painting out of it.

I took a bunch of photos on our recent excursion to the Schoodic Peninsula. Sitting in the DIAA gallery with Oscar, I decided to paint Dan against the dark brush – white hair (paper), orange (cadmium red, cadmium orange, alizarin crimson and maybe some quinacridone magenta) shirt, blue (cobalt) suspenders and white (paper)-with-shadow (cobalt and raw umber) pants.

The first painting looks weak and watery. And I’m trying to paint looser, but it isn’t working.

The second version is better, though I’m not thrilled with the figure.

Schoodic Stroll

And I didn’t get orange — red-orange, really — quite the way I want it. Red is hard to paint. You can’t just add water or white to lighten it and get gradations the way you can with blue. You have to combine different reds. In water color, for example, you might combine cadmium red, which is opaque, and quinacridone magenta, which is transparent.

I had an art teacher who once made her students study the Vermeer painting, “Girl With the Red Hat” so we understood how to paint red. We had to count how many different reds were in the hat. I don’t remember how many, except that it was a lot.

Johannes Vermeer (Dutch, 1632 – 1675 ), Girl with the Red Hat, c. 1665/1666, oil on panel, Andrew W. Mellon Collection

There’s a lot to say about red. Playwright John Logan did in his play about Mark Rothko called Red by John Logan. I saw a terrific performance of it at The Winnipesaukee Playhouse with my mother-in-law two summers ago. But I digress.

I decide to paint Schoodic Stroll once more in 30 minutes. Just as an exercise to loosen up. Here’s what happened:

Maybe I’ll take another crack at it some other time.

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To the Lighthouse on Day Sixteen

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Today I finally fix my painting of Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse. There’s a triangular rock under a pine tree with too much light on it, and it ruins the composition. I feel it staring at me from up on the wall, like a portrait with eyes that move. Finally I can’t take it anymore. I take the painting off the wall, paint out the rock and put it back on the wall. There. Much better.

Incitement wall.

There’s a bumper sticker you see on Deer Isle that says “Incite Art. Create Community.” (You also see “Fish Forever.”) I believe the Stonington Opera House printed it about 20 years ago.

It doesn’t say, “Paint A Lighthouse.”

Oscar and I create some community today as we incite art in the DIAA gallery. We host a parade of visitors, people stopping by on the way to the Post Office or the library or driving through town.

Hub White stops in and I give him the bad news: His ART matters 2 discussion series will fall on Super Bowl Sunday – and the Patriots are playing. With this arty crowd it probably won’t affect attendance much, not half as bad as a Bagaduce Chorale concert.

Hub sighs. “Next year I’m going to notify the NFL not to schedule the Super Bowl on the same day as ART matters,” he says.

Oscar looks up from his painting. “Is football still big at Michigan?” he asks.

“OSCAR, did you GO to Michigan?” says Hub. (They both studied architecture at the University of Michigan.)

Rebecca Daugherty and Michael Daugherty drop in. They live directly off their work, writing and painting and paddling kayaks. They used to run an art gallery in Stonington called Isalos, and now Rebecca is painting in a studio in Stonington’s old elementary school. Michael is a Maine Guide who wrote a book on kayaking and is working on a novel.

I am embarrassed about my lighthouse paintings. I give Michael and Rebecca my shtick about how it was Edward Hopper who made the lighthouse a cliché. Rebecca says Winslow Homer painted lighthouses before Edward Hopper and they were awesome.

Edward Weston, “Pepper 30.”

Michael says you make things your own. “When Edward Weston photographed peppers, people said peppers had been photographed before,” said Michael. “But Weston said, ‘These are my peppers’.”

Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse

I guess this is my lighthouse.

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Day Ten Brings a Clam Pie Run and Pickleball

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Dan comes by. He just dropped two cases of clam pie off at Tradewinds in Blue Hill. They have a Made in Maine section. We love them.

“Look at all the nice paintings on the wall,” Dan says.

“They suck,” I say.

“No, they’re nice,” he says.

Oscar looks up. “You say they suck, then people say they’re good. That’s the deal. That’s what we do.”

I see Katy Helman coming out of the post office. I wave and open the door. She comes in. “I’m going to ask Linda if she can take photos with her drone for my Haystack students next weekend,” she says. “Cool idea,” I say.

The painting that used to have a Pepto-Bismol sky

She looks at my Pepto-Bismol painting without the Pepto and slips into Teacher Mode, which I always find entertaining. “Much improved,” she says.

Oscar’s Church of the Morning After painting

“Who did this?” she says, pointing to Oscar’s painting of the Church of the Morning After. “Oscar, you should do white line woodcuts,” she says. “It would really lend itself to your work.”

We look up Kate Hanlon, Katy’s friend who does white line woodcuts. Hmmm. Good idea. Katy explains how it works. Maybe she’ll teach us.

30-Minute Cadillac Mountain painting

She looks at my 30-minute mountain painting. “Why didn’t you use a square format?” she said. “If you cropped it and moved the figure in it would be much more dynamic.”

“It’s a pain to mat and frame square formats,” I say. Matting and framing are the bane of artists who work with paper. It’s why some people turn to oil on canvas. It’s probably why I’ll turn to oil on canvas. Katy says you can get square frames at Target. The nearest Target is an hour and a half away.

I run to the Galley to get a sandwich. Oscar brought his lunch so he’s going to stay put, though he loves the Galley. Along with the Burnt Cove Market and V&S Variety, it’s the biggest worker cooperative in the state of Maine.

When I return Oscar is explaining to Katy it’s nearly impossible for him to remember names since his stroke (though I’m flattered he remembers mine). To learn a new technique, he has to see it repeated and repeated and repeated. Katy says, “So you adjust.”

Oscar and I walk to 44 North to get our half cup of coffee. The lights are on in Bruce Bulger’s studio in the old high school, so we go in. Bruce makes beautiful furniture. He is a woodworker and illustrator, and his studio is filled with marvelous machinery and woodcutting tools. Bruce’s son comes out and greets us.

He’s working on a drawer with 45-degree angled dovetails. “How many times do you measure before you cut?” I ask. “The more I measure, the less I have to cut,” he says.

I take a picture of the big wooden statue in the next room. “That’s Tam Tam,” he says. “From the Fiji Islands.” It’s going to the Blue Hill Library. His dad is making a pedestal for it. I try to take a picture of Rudy, his new puppy. Rudy is too quick for me and hides under a workbench.

Melissa Raftery is in at 44 North Coffee. She says they’re excited about moving to the old Fibula Gallery on Main Street. They’ll have nooks for the coffee shop on the first floor, she says, and they’ll have to hire a crane to move their roaster. I tell her they’ll do very, very well. I take a picture for the Stonington Farmers Market Facebook page. Too bad I can’t take a photo of her partner, Megan Wood, too. “She’s in Guatemala,” says Melissa. “I got to go to Australia last year.” On coffee business.

I paint horses, two of them, at Acadia. I try to draw very precisely and paint very loosely. I’m almost done at the end of the day. Oscar says it’s the best thing I’ve done. I’m not sure how I feel about it.

Acadian Horseback

Oscar wants to try pickleball tonight so I drop him off at the Island Community Center, go home, change, and return to pickleball. There are 11 new players and 12 old ones, like me. Pickleballs are flying all over the gym, coats and boots piled on the benches and buzzing conversations while people wait their turn to play. Or try to play. I tell a newbie I like to come to the gym in winter because it’s warm and light and friendly when it’s cold and dreary outside. “I need more of that in my life,” she says.

At the end of Day Ten.

 

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On Day Three, Two Deer Isle Artists in Residence

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Oscar lays out his things and starts work on a sketch of the guys jamming at the Church of the Morning After.  It’s not much more than a fish shack. Everyone is welcome to listen or play there on Sunday mornings at 7.

I show Oscar the pastel I’ve done of the outside of Church. He shows me a watercolor sketch he did.

“It’s the best thing on the island,” he says, meaning the Church. He tells me he wants to do a new painting in color. It’s the most ambitious thing he’s done so far, I think. I work on a new painting of Cadillac Mountain.

We take a break at lunch and walk to 44 North for coffee. Rufus recognizes me. “I met you before,” he says. “Last summer. You do the web work for the Farmer’s Market.” We chat. Oscar orders some Sumatra coffee and explains he wants it ground fine, not too fine. Rufus says he wants to have sketching sessions in the summer at the 44 North shop in Stonington. Maybe Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings. “Oscar would love that,” I said. “He can walk to it.”

As we come back from 44 North, Oscar points to a house. He’s trying to tell me something but I don’t understand. Later I do. He was pointing to the Haystack Mountain School of Crafts building on Rte. 15. “That’s where Stu Kestenbaum works,” he says.

“He’s a nice guy,” I say. “I play pickleball with him.”

Oscar tells me he went to one of Stu’s poetry readings. Stu is the poet laureate of Maine. Oscar sat up front, loved Stu’s poetry. Afterward he talked to Stu. “I can’t talk. I get frustrated,” he says.

Oscar can’t always say what we wants to say since he had a stroke. But he usually gets across his meaning. Besides, a lot of idle chit chat is overrated.

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