Only last week…

It was a stellar time on Martha’s Vineyard. A magnificent gallery opening with wall to wall kind and generous patrons of the arts, bookended by two amazing weeks on the wildly changed and stunningly brilliant Chilmark bluff.

I’ll have more to say about that and this, but for now, I have to kick the studio up into high gear to get ready for the next show…stay tuned.

Here are just a couple pics of the exhibition and smiling faces of dear ones who shared our island hearts…

4 Featured Artists, Wendy, Don, Heather and David, as we get ready to shake some hands.

4 Featured Artists, Wendy, Don, Heather and David, as we get ready to shake some hands.

gallery2 gallery6 gallery7 gallery 1  gallery 4

Wendy, Herself and David making everyone feel welcome.

Wendy, Herself and David making everyone feel welcome.

Mr. Morse plying his trade.

Mr. Morse plying his trade.

Ted, wouldn't have missed it.

Ted, wouldn’t have missed it.

Family traditions ...

Family traditions …

The gallery's next generation...

The gallery’s next generation…

The Follansbee Family full of fun.

The Follansbee Family full of fun.

And a wonderful whirlwind reunion with Goddaughter Emily.

And a wonderful whirlwind reunion with Goddaughter Emily.

Notably missing are photos of the rest of the Granary Crew, Sheila, Adam, Sara, Nancy and Adam, the second, who were far too busy working hard to keep that place hopping. We are deeply grateful for everyone’s support up there…both humble and proud to be a part of their stable…as it were.

More to come as I sort through the ten thousand or more photos taken. The camera is still smokin’.
For now…I gotta go hit the brushes…
Be happy all.





Looking forward

A cup of chowder out back of Larsen’s on a perfect vineyard day. Show opens tomorrow night and the buzz is going around the island. I’m getting excited. May you all have a safe happy weekend full of art!



Well art fans,
we have a few last minute crisis to find work arounds for here in the studio today…
and the trailer is scheduled to roll outta here in less that 40 hours…

SO, the first thing to give is gonna be this high falootin’, wait-for-it, three at a time…roll-out -the- paintings, production thingy.

Framed and wrapped and taking up a LOT of space in the studio now, are all 16 paintings…waiting for the weather to cooperate so they can be loaded into the trailer for the big haul northeast.
You have seen the first six, and here, all together now, are the remaining ones…

Considered for your approval…The Granary Gallery Show 2014

Chambered Linens  -  36 x 24

Chambered Linens


The Road Race  -  20 x 16

The Road Race


The Carriage House  -  18 x 24

The Carriage House


King’s Highway Deep  -  18 x 24

Kings Highway Deep


Looking Back  -  92 x 48

Looking Back


Coast Guard Crow  -  40 x 30

Coat Guard Crow


The Wreck of The Betty  -  36 x 24

The Wreck of The Betty


Squibnocket Sunset  -  36 x 18

Squibnocket Sunset


Laylines  -  46 x 32

Lay Lines


The Watch  -  24 x 16

The Watch



And there ya go…
We will be at the opening on Sunday night July 20th from 5-7pm
at The Granary Gallery in West Tisbury on the island of Martha’s Vineyard.

Thank you all for viewing and for your continuing support.

It means more than I can ever say.

Yours in a flurry,









Vernissage 2 …

My first solo show, way back in 2001, was titled, Vernissage.

Wiki defines it thusly…A vernissage (varnishing, from French) is a term used for a preview of an art exhibition, which may be private, before the formal opening.Guests may be served canapés and wine as they discuss with artists and others the works in the exhibition.

Right about now I’d love to serve you up some canapes and wine but, since we are here in cyberspace, this will be a Virtual Vernissage.

You are cordially invited to preview the new paintings which will be exhibited two weeks from tonight at the Granary Gallery !

This year I am going to launch the new work in groups.

As I sat last winter, with sketchbook in hand and snowflakes flying outside the studio, and began to pare down the list of compositions, some distinct and new series began to take shape. Try as I might to fit them all under the umbrella of one theme, they pushed back and up and out and I gave up worrying about it and just kept painting.
What emerged after several months of work were a few smaller grouped ideas with the occasional common thread. I’m not sure if anyone but me will see those threads, but I’ll point them out along the way.

We start, yes, at the beginning.
The first three paintings I did were studies of barns, and wood, animals and earth.
So…from the ground up…here we go

Stable Light  -  24 x 30

Stable Light

Click on this logo below each painting to read their Painter’s Notes - 


The Hay Whisperers  -  24 x 36

The Hay Whisperer


Angle of Repose  -  60 x 40

Angle of Repose


Time now for a bit of my own repose…
tomorrow the journey continues…

Granary Gallery Season 2014

The exhibition of summer shows at the Granary Gallery opens tomorrow night…and I’m sending all manner of good art vibes to my pals who will start the season off with a bang…

Ken Vincent – Morning Has Broken  24 x 8 Oil on Panel

David Wallis  -  Morgan Whaleboat  28 x 39  Watercolor

Alison Shaw  -  Whaleboat, Gannon & Benjamin Boat Yard 2013

Dan West  -  Kingfisher  12×10 x 7 Sculpture

And a nod to our fellow art night pal John Hagen whose work is on display at the Granary and who will hopefully be ready to show new work very soon…

John Hagen  -  Plein Air Path to Edgartown Light  14 x 11 Oil on Canvas

In “depend” ence


Not sure if this is true for you
but as time marches on
I struggle less for independence
and tug more on the threads
that pull us all together…
Travel safe this weekend my friends…

so much depends

so much depends

a red wheel

glazed with rain

beside the white

William Carlos Williams


Ted and Pete as Muses

Ted and Pete have made quite a splash in their Cover debut on the American Art Collector Magazine this month, and I thought you would like to see some of their other inspirations as Muses.

Over the years, they each gave me the great gift of seeing the island of Martha’s Vineyard through their eyes. Both had DNA spread liberally across generations and rolling fields and they had an eager student of island history in my eager ears.

Ted and his wife Polly sent me wandering down many a sandy trail through brambles and over rocky rutted roads in pursuit of hidden landmarks and relics of island lore. After Polly left us, Ted rode shotgun on those adventures and navigated us to some seriously back-of-the-beyond treasures.

One such romp was to find the elusive Gay Head Lily. We ended up announcing ourselves in this lovely woman’s yard at the end of a long lane and out Ted, the celebrated head of the island garden club, waltzed to her dock along the pond to show me the flowers. Stunning. As I look back today, his hand seems far more delicate than those petals, but oh the wonders, that magician that he was, our Ted, could pull out of his hat.

Here’s a link to the original blog entry describing this painting…Click Here.

ted holding lily

ted on dock

Gay Head Lily

Another fine day found Ted and PG Harris and I bouncing along an old carriage path in my truck in search of The Brickyard. Ted thought it would be sorta fun to see it, and introduced me to PG whose family owned the property, and, after a couple hours of historical lecture on the area…off we three drove…I mean there we were in the middle of three glorious old fields surrounded by ancient stone walls and PG points to a small break in the stone and says, “Just drive over and through there and we’ll see.”
The Painter’s Notes give the rest of the story…click here… but suffice it to say, now that they are both floating somewhere high above that island…that adventure was one of my all time favorite memories.

Brick Yard Tea

Now, Peter Darling, well…he was just Pete. We called him the Admiral because he always had binoculars around his neck and was ever watchful from his deck. Not nothing, not no one, got past his old farm house on Greenhouse Lane without Pete knowin’ about it. Many a stranded sailor was rescued by the coast guard that Pete had hailed after spying their distress from his perch on top of those bluff steps. And every feather of the nesting osprey was monitored by their stalwart steward of a neighbor.

There is a tiny knoll in the long lane, right by his house, and I took to honking my horn with each passage so as to let oncoming traffic be wary, (and just between you and me…to keep the Admiral on his toes !). The very last time I heard from Pete, he had brought out a great big foghorn to his porch and answered my heralding call with his own. I really loved that.

grillmaster pete

These two views of Pete’s house give you an idea of the depth of beauty that surrounds the Darling’s farmhouse. His wife Della is there now and I’m eager to see her next week to give her a big hug and hear how life on the lane is faring this season. Della is a great fisherman and a lover of walks. In her travels, she has worn a path all along the perimeter of those old stone walls. I hear that some daisies grow there to welcome her in the late spring. She has earned them.



A couple of years ago…the year of the Apple Series, I spent the winter listening to the double trouble musings of Ted and Pete.
Pete was a tremendous trove of knowledge of Up Island lore and indeed history of all flavors. He loaned me a couple old tin coffee pots, the kind that were used over campfires by campers and travelers to cook up the early morning brew. The dear little one that made it into the Skillet Apple Pie painting was my favorite. Looking back, I should have blown some smoke out of that thing. Pete woulda loved that.

skillet apple pie

The core of this series, (written before the pun hit me, sorry), was the modeling session with Ted in the Magnuson’s Tiasquin Orchard…which all started with Chris’s suggestion…and the rest of that story is in these Painter’s Notes…click here.


Tiasquin Orchard

And the man himself…
The Muse

who sits in this chair across from my easel
and reminds me, every day,
that I am all the better
for knowing that twinkle
in his mishcievous
and loving eye.


Never trust a man,
who when left alone
in a room with a teacozy,
does’t try it on.

Billy Connolly

Cardinal Smash

The Basket Weaver

Intermittent Reinforcement -
That would be akin to psychological torture and for an artist, in her studio, painting with tiny brushes, all day…
most, any … all distractions raise the blood pressure.
In the case of the smashing cardinal, radical measures had to be taken…


Earlier this spring, The Bird, started seeing her reflection in this window and set to hurling herself at it. Repeatedly. In five – ten minute intervals. Sun up. To sundown.
My easel is six feet to the left.Where, this spring, I was sitting…Sun up to Sundown and then some.
Years ago a naturalist friend explained the phenomenon to me and I have since forgotten all the lovely avian reasoning behind the need to defend…against oneself. And, though I have had oodles of time to ponder the psychological anomalies of seeing one’s own reflection as a threat…a constant threat…I long ago lost patience with the hurling distraction. Not to mention the self-mutilating brutality of what the poor misguided bird must be experiencing.

So, the sheet. Which neighborhood watch persons, Paul and Matt, saw on their daily bucolic commutes and wrote a scathing review of on social media. Insert smiley face emoticon.

This fix did work. It even survived for many weeks through storm and wind and hail. Last week, after I had left the easel behind for some quilting therapy, and needed more light, I took down the sheet.
Tap tap…smash. She was back.
Now, sitting directly in front of the action, I was able to see that, except for some drool and bother, there didn’t seem to be much in the way of residual bird parts left after the attacks. The beak alone was being used to make… her point. I had hoped that it was a nesting behavior and that all that mess would be over by now. But no. Or still. I’m not sure.

Either way, the sheet has gone back up. I have left the now dim corner of the quilting chair, and returned to the easel. And now, just for fun, I am privy to one or two tiny taps an hour. Seems that she is ever vigilant, but now only curious, and she flies up to the top of the sheet and perches and peers inside for a silent, blessedly silent, minute or two and then is off. You would have had a photo of this for confirmation, but she is camera shy.

I, of course, am curious my own self.
Trickster Goddess or Muse ?Painter or Seamstress.
Perhaps time will tell…
I know SHE won’t.



Last year at this time …


I was framing up the paintings from the Reclamation Series .

Sailing Camp Shadows

There was a catalog to get to the printers, a flurry to ship a piece or two up to the Museum for their annual fundraiser, and, as I recall…a general air of that flurry, nay panic, about getting everything done in time to make our ferry reservations.

This year…I somehow went from being a month behind schedule in May…to being waaay ahead of that same schedule here in the month of June.

The watch 2014

Don’t get me wrong, I am not in search of things to fill this time. There are small craft warning options, and bags of tools, and tempting books, in piles in every single room in both studio and log cabin. But for the first time in a decade I am, shall we say, relaxing into these early summer days.

Entire pots of coffee are slowly consumed in the morning sky chair. Weeds, which are historically allowed to cycle into full tilt trees, are being yanked in their youth. Many small, and a couple of large, projects have been crossed off the home improvement list. Parts of the studio can actually be called cleaned up. Ok small parts but hey.

And I have spent hours at a time, with tiny needle in hand, in a different corner of the studio, peacefully quilting.

My working theory is the brutal winter. It shifted something. Hard to the left. Can’t even write about it except to say that warm sun and blue skies are to be bathed in.

So, finding myself with this breath of extra time I am actually going back to the easel. The large panel, which was the last ptg finished for the Granary show, had to remain on the easel until it was time to varnish and then haul up to the photographers. We hooked up the trailer and I took it up to John Corcoran yesterday so it feels like a dance hall in here.

John recently confessed that he, like myself and so many other artists, is often anxious after a hiatus from the work. The ever present doubts that we’ve still “got it” sometimes make it hard to pick up a brush, or camera in his case, and crawl out on that creative limb again. The break which happens every year at this time, between pre and post MV show, always throws me that curve ball.

But today, in my newly granted, and oh so profoundly appreciated, stay of anxiety…I’ve got an idea for a teacup composition that has been teasing the muses and I’m going to squeeze out some fresh paint and open the windows and let the solstice inspired breezes play with the brushes.

How fun is that.