The List

And so it can be revealed…

The List

The List – Commission for The Hunters on the occasion of their 30th Anniversary

This one was special, for the one who holds the position of being the first, and most enduring, patron. It goes that far back. And it was no surprise that, when Steph, a world class facilitator from elementary school days,  requested a painting to mark this milestone in their lives, she sent me a 38 page…LIST… of the “most” important things about their marriage and decades together.
I confess that it was daunting. Just printing out the tome required a trip to the office store. And the pressure…how to edit and redact and not leave out one sentimental jot. But then, I know these Hunters. And what I know of them, what tops the list, is their complete and uncluttered love for each other and for life.

Paired down to its essence, these elements are all they need to enjoy a day, let alone a lifetime, with each other. The rest is always pure spontaneous gusto.

Congratulations you zesty dear ones…

Granary Gallery on Facebook

When I sit down to start work at the easel each day, one of the things I do to center myself is to check email and facebook before I PUT-DOWN-THE-PHONE .

Today the Granary Gallery had a post with this painting shining back at me…Her Smalls72

Her Smalls -

from the painter’s notes…

I believe the origin is British
but that doesn’t matter.
Smalls…it’s just a matter of undergarments.
And the dearness of intimacy.
And the gift of props.
Like the hat box which belonged to John’s grandmother.
The tiny gloves that I wore to the White House.
The delicates which used to live on the shelves in the Muddy Creek General Store.
The leather purse and traveling iron which used to live on the shelf in Jane’s shop.
The coin silver spoon that Ted gave.
The teacup that Sue had to remind me was from her grandmother.
And that whimsical handkerchief of Polly’s which I pulled from the drawer
because of it’s red stripe, and only discovered half way through setting up the still life,
that it’s little girl was, Herself, doing the ironing.

Some of my most favorite paintings come from a single word.
And the gathering round of favorite things.
And the gift of quiet leisure in which to cherish them both.

A nod of thanks to the Granary staff for keeping the work alive and fresh and for all their support…which is no “small” thing.

News from Menemsha


From the MV Gazette…(photo credit, Albert O. Fisher)

New Harbor Master Shack Arrives in Menemsha

A new harbor master shack arrived in Menemsha on Monday afternoon, replacing the 35-year-old building perched above the commercial dock. The shack was built by students at the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School and transported via trailer. Voters approved spending $24,000 on the project late last year.”They did a nice job,” harbor master Dennis Jason Jr. said at a recent board of selectmen meeting. “The building was nicely put together.” – See more at:

So, if I read this correctly, this newly delivered building will replace…

this old building…


Harbor Master – 2002

Just part of the many new changes in store for this old fishing village…stay tuned.




it’s a secret…

but Pat is driving a snuggly wrapped and newly commissioned painting up to FedEx as I write.

It’s for a special anniversary so I can’t show you just yet…but I will, once the bubbly has been emptied.

Meanwhile, here’s a throwback to a couple of my favorite earlier commissioned paintings…


Outward Bound 2002, for the Pomeroy Family

Waking Early

Waking Early 2006, for Kate and Mary Jo

Working on commissions gives me an added layer of meaningful connection with the patrons and I enjoy the detours in my painting schedule.

If you’ve got an interest, here’s a link to the Commission Statement on my website.

Simple and honest…that’s the way I like to work.

Now go find a daffodil to hug.




Captain my captain…

the captains 72

How, on this first day of spring,
I would love to be there again…
a step or two behind on the path
just out of earshot,
though I suspect there were few words to overhear,
and light years away from their memories…
but there, at least, to offer a wing, and a grin,
and to listen to these two old crones
telling their tales
to the sea.

Ted and Pete,

Against the odds,
they both weathered this winter
but neither is here today to welcome the spring.

Or, maybe I’m wrong about that.
Think I’ll grab my hat
and my stick
and strut the old pegs
and see what they have left along the trail
to brighten my sad eyes.

Pete Darling
March 19, 2014




Spam spam spam spam…


wave the flags of freedom…

OK that’s a bit lofty (and probably influenced by the book I am listening to about the French resistance), but I have reached my limit…

My webmaster called it a “brute force attack”,  something to do with blacklists and hackers, alls I know is that for the last year I have been flooded with bogus blog comments.
Seriously, daily dozens of ridiculously worded ersatz appreciations of everything from content to spelling of blog related matter in an effort to get me to “Approve” them and allow entry to the inner sanctum.
And today…
I have pulled the plug on those brutes.

If I unchecked the correct button, comments will no longer be allowed on my blog.
Not really a big deal except for the handful of loyal readers, you KNOW who you are, and the two or three others who occasionally wish to be heard on a given matter.
This shouldn’t affect any of you who look and lurk and generally like what you see here, and it won’t apply to all the facebook readers, but it hopefully will free up my emailbox for the countless other legitimate spam which tries to lodge there for my considered approval.

Meanwhile, life and creativity and many happy hours of painting continue on here in the studio. I’m working on a special commission which allows me to bring some blue skies and bright light into the last of these winter days. No sneak peaks since it is surprise !

But there is a whole lot of new work burgeoning on the spring horizon and the hint of an exciting new show to announce soon. Stay tuned and stay frosty out there…and…all you attackers…

keep your comments to yourself !

I feel better already.

Above painting, with flags at the ready, is Trinity and is currently waving it’s tri-colours over the hills of Santa Fe, at the Sugarman Peterson Gallery.

What’s that I hear ?

The Basket Weaver


This little pal has been very busy outside my studio window of late.

My numb and frozen digits can’t sense what her internal clock has registered.

But the switch has been thrown.

Clean up of all those storm downed limbs has begun…albeit on a tiny tiny scale.

But it’s a start, and judging by the monumentally increased activity levels…

the yard should be well sorted by the time I get to hang up my mittens.

Weave on my feathered friends…


More snow on the way…

James Pond

Just for a few hours
I’d really like to sit on the porch
with my feet up
and almost all of the 15 layers of thermal woolen wear
laying in a pile to my right
and my snow shovel tossed into the weeds nearby
and feel the sun on my face
and have every joint in my hands be…not cold
and just listen to the birds
and the water lapping
on this shore…

pretty please.





I have a lot of things to say about this man…but right now the words are twisted up in my heart.

Last Tuesday, just about the exact time our electricity surged and vanished, so too did his heart.

The ensuing days in the cold and dark were made for the stalwart steadfast Yankee spirited New Englanders, like him. And the distractions of simple survival were just that, distractions.

Only now, as power has been restored and the outside world has followed the newly spliced cables into my studio space,
and the furnace has begun to restore my frozen digits,
and the breath is beginning to return to my soul…
only today am I able to return to the easel,
across from which is this painting,
which I am so glad I didn’t sell when someone pressured me a while back,
because I need him there,
since he is no longer sitting in his Chilmark wingback,
answering my phone call,
and directing the brushes from afar.

Ted Meinelt,
it’s all right then.