Sunday, January 21, 2018

Art Every Day

This month, I am participating in the Thirty Squared art challenge. Most of the artists are attempting to do a painting a day. I am focusing on just doing some sort of art ever day. I participated last year for the first time and found it to be an extremely rewarding experience.
A collection of morning doodles
My usual morning commute to work is spent checking email and looking at social media. The sitting still part of my commute is under 15 minutes. Could I use that time to make art? Instead of looking at other people's news, I decided to do a morning doodle. For my doodles, I am using Strathmore Watercolor Artist Tiles that are 6 inch square and Faber Castell artist pens. I carry my supplies in a ziplock plastic bag.
I've wanted to paint a spot in East Hampton with Adirondack chairs facing an inlet. It is in one of those "members only" areas unavailable for a plein air painting effort. I want to render it in oil paint, this watercolor interpretation is good for practice. 
I took pad and paper and began sketching Hugh. There were moments of triumph when I thought I was starting to get it, followed by defeat when I realized that my efforts were ending in failure. I felt bad showing him the terrible renderings with the excuse that I needed more practice. He was a darling, "Well, I'll be here every night." Awwwww.... My model husband.
International Artist Magazine had a watercolor tutorial on painting faces. Some test runs.
Southampton Shores
oil on canvas, 11 x 14"
I broke out the oil paints to see if I could finish a plein air piece that I began this summer of the beach at Southampton Shores. It is still unfinished, but in a bit better place than I left it last. Progress on my UFOs is good, but I was itching to start a new project. This weekend, I was inspired to start a new series of small paintings. The toy boat below is the first in my "Toy" series. I'm excited to discover the next toy who will have its portrait painted in oil.
Toy Boat
oil on canvas panel, 8in square

Creating art every day is already yielding promising results.

We saw the film, I'm Not Your Negro, based on an unfinished book by James Baldwin the night of the holiday in memory of Martin Luther King, Jr. The film is strong, moving, a charge against complacency. I woke up with a phrase going through my head. "A hundred march, a hundred learn... a hundred pray, a hundred burn." On my way to work, I wrote out the words before I could forget them. The morning doodle was replaced by a Pantoum. 
This weekend... I marched.

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

A New Year, Already Flying

Flying Point Beach
Getting warm.
I recently discovered that the First Presbyterian church shelters the homeless from November through March. First Pres. is one of the local churches participating in Maureen's Haven program, where houses of worship give shelter to those in need. 
Girlfriends at Turtle Pond
We are beginning the year with crisply cold, snowy weather. I am still catching up with family for holiday cheer. I love the multi-day, multi-state celebrations. It multiplies the joy of the season for me. The cold weather has been good for bundling indoors and counting blessings. I am fortunate to have a healthy husband who is my best friend and true love, wonderful family on both sides, a job that provides. (Right about now, Hugh would have me knock wood.) For resolutions? To be kind and do the best I can, to give it my all, no matter what it may be.
I wish you and yours all the best in the New Year.

Friday, December 22, 2017

Exquisite Madoo

The serene Madoo Conservancy is one the Hampton's hidden gems. Normal visiting season is May through September, but it is open off season for not to be missed special events. In late November, April Gornik curated a show in the newly renovated summer studio, titled Touch the Earth. The show featured work by Robert Dash, Michele Oka Doner and Toni Ross. Bob Dash passed away in 2013, but his home, studio and gardens continue to teach and enchant. 
My previous visits to Madoo (old Scott for "my dove") had only been to the gardens during summer. I was excited to finally see the interior of Dash's newly restored summer studio, a former c1740s barn. The spacious, light filled space was a perfect showplace for the organic artwork within. 
Sculpture by Toni Ross
The red summerhouse living room with its collection of unique furnishings and art is amazing. Imagining Bob Dash retiring to his bentwood rocker to contemplate the garden after a stretch of painting in the large airy studio was inspirational.
The garden
Little Free Library
Madoo Conservancy
The Magic of Madoo by Charlotte Moss
Maddox Conservancy for Free, All of the Time by Jennifer Landes

Monday, December 18, 2017

Holiday Miracle, Cinema Update

December 16, 2016
photo Randee Daddona, NY Times via
Just three days before the one year of anniversary of the fire that devastated Main Street and weeks before the December 31st closing deadline, the Sag Harbor Partnership was granted $1.4 million from New York State towards the purchase of the Sag Harbor Cinema property for the purpose of creating a non-profit Cinema Arts Center. This grant bridges the gap that will turn the dream into reality. 
December 16, 2017

April Gornik, artist, activist and VP of the Sag Harbor Partnership composes the regular Sag Harbor Partnership emails. (sign up here). Please allow me to quote from the anniversary email:

Photos: Michael Heller, Sag Harbor Express
 ON A DAY COLDER THAN TODAY, exactly one year ago, the dreadful fire occurred that destroyed so much of Main Street, right in the center of the village. Firefighters from all over Long Island kept up the fight with icicles hanging from their helmets. People from Sag Harbor, restaurants, shops, etc, offered coffee and food and shelter as first responders battled in the early morning hours and kept on until the fire was contained, much later that day.

By mid-afternoon, when it was determined that the facade of the Cinema was leaning dangerously toward the street and must come down, Mayor Sandra Schroeder, the Village Board or Trustees, and building inspector Tom Preiato, after a day of gruesome stress and work, kindly listened to people begging to save the sign, finally allowing it. At about 8pm, a bulldozer operator toppled the facade as gently as he could and removed the sign to the street, mangled but intact.

There, Chris Denon of Twin Forks Moving and Storage removed it to his truck and has safely stored it ever since. Unbeknownst to us, friends of his quietly worked on restoring the sign, and it wasn't until we went into contract for the Cinema that we found out that John Battle and Clayton Orehek were restoring it to its previous condition out of the goodness of their own hearts, for free, which repair had been estimated at $30,000.

Elliott Meisel volunteered, through his friend Cinema board member Gregg Winter, to help us with our contract for the Cinema. Board member Ron Kaplan assisted with its writing.

Eric Fischl gave $1M so we could sign the contract.

Elizabeth Dow called shortly after the contract was signed and offered high-grade fabric to restore every seat in the theater.

These are just a few of the people who have stepped up during and since the fire to make the Cinema come alive again.

We throw the word "community" around a lot. But here's what it looks like: It looks like people from all over our village who care, and step up, and come together in times of crisis. 

We salute all of you, and we thank you for your help."

Monday, December 4, 2017

Book Signing and Shop for the Cinema

Please join me this Saturday, December 9th between 2:00 and 4:00 pm for a book signing and a 'Sip and Shop' for the Sag Harbor Cinema Arts Center. Annette Hinkle, author of Sag Harbor: 100 Years of Film in the Village, will be signing copies of her book and J. McLaughlin, our host, will be offering 15% of store sales to the Cinema rebuilding fund. A signed copy of Annette's wonderful book would be the perfect gift for anyone who loves movies, history and the Hamptons.
Annette Hinkle 
This event is coming together thanks to Valerie Cox, the manager of J.McLaughlin, Southampton. Val is one of those people that naturally inspires. She is always bubbling with enthusiasm about local happenings and people. Val is also an artist, so we naturally fall into talking about arty things. Of course, while chatting, I am shopping. (I even wrote about it here) Recently, Val suggested an event for the Cinema, possibly a 'sip and shop' or book signing. This is when the giant light bulb appeared over both of our heads. Sipping? Shopping? BOOKS!? I know JUST the book! Luckily, Annette Hinkle and her publisher, Pauline Neuwirth both said, 'yes'. This is going to be a great event. Please stop by and say hello! 
Picture Annette here signing books!
J. McLaughin has some lovely things for the holidays. I am sure that I will not be leaving empty handed.
The store stocks both women's and men't wear.
Swim trunks still available for those heading south or dreaming of summer.
See you Saturday!
2 Jobs Lane
Southampton, NY 11968
I took this photo December 18, 2016. It's been nearly a year since the fire.
Thank you so much for all of your help and encouragement.