Sunday, September 23, 2012

The Last Rose of Summer

The cool nights have begun and it won't be long now before the garden blooms will be at an end. As the rose bushes get fewer and fewer new buds I am suddenly reminded to stop and smell the roses and to also consider painting them.  For example, a beautiful scene greats those arriving at the East Hampton train station. The roses climbing the spit rail fence out front announce to disembarking passengers that surely they have arrived in a heavenly place. Your bicycles await.
The Garden Club of East Hampton, founded in 1914, keeps the train station roses looking gorgeous as one of their many acts of generous community service. If you stop to ask them their dead heading techniques they are bound to tell you to grab a clipper and join in the work. In Southampton, there is also a beautiful rose garden at the Rogers Memorial Library It was presented to the people of the town in 2003 by the Southampton Rose Society.
Southampton Rose Society Garden at Rogers Memorial Library
closer look at Rogers Library roses
On your way home, don't forget to stop and check out the roses and other assorted blooms outside Kathleen King's bake shop Tates, on North Sea Road in Southampton. Of course, you may need to sample some of their delicious chocolate chip cookies while you are there.
Tates Bake Shop
Back in my own back yard, I examine the David Austins, the Knock Outs, and the Martha's Vineyard roses to see what I can put together for a still life set up.
backyard beauties
I select a blue and white Russian porcelain tea cup, a gift from my sister-in-law, and fill it with flowers.
Here is my work so far, it's not done yet!

I searched Youtube and found this sweet version of "The Last Rose of Summer". The music is by George Alexander Osborne with words by Irish poet Thomas Moore sung by Deanna Durbin just before her 17th birthday in 1938.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Farm Stand Love

image via
We had been driving past the deserted shack at the intersection of Noyac and Stoney Hill roads on our way to Sag Harbor for years. It reminded me of a shack that my grandparents had on their farm in Minnesota. A peeling wood building that my brother, sister and the cousins converted from its previous life as a calf house into a club house. Uneven planks of wood with weeds all around. It definitely had seen better days. Each time we drove by, I pictured it converted into a different business.  One week an artsy news stand, another week a farm stand. Imagine my delight when the shack actually was opened as the farm stand  Serene Green. John and Laura Smith are in their second year as the proprietors of Serene Green. John, a third generation East End farmer, is also responsible (with Laura) for the ECCO farm stand in East Hampton.  You can see all of the care and attention to detail that John and Laura have taken to provide the best area products from produce to fresh local seafood and baked goods.

every size shape and color of tomato

beautiful herbs grown on site

local paintings for sale by Marcella Yenick
Serene Green hopes to remain open throughout the Fall season, hopefully until December. See their website for hours, specials and seasonal updates. I look forward to stopping in for supplies, both for eating and for painting!
Hampton Sunflowers oil on canvas Gail Gallagher
Eggplants oil on canvas by Gail Gallagher

Serene Green 3980 Noyac Road, Sag Harbor 11963
Serene Green HERE

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

North Haven

Labor Day was beautiful. Sunny with wisps of clouds, 74 degrees. A perfect day to paint outdoors. We decided to head to North Haven. North Haven is an almost island connected to the south fork by Long Beach and to Sag Harbor by the Jordan Haerter Memorial Bridge.
We headed down a narrow unpaved path off Harbor Drive.
The wind is blowing, but we decide to go for it.
North Haven view towards Sag Harbor

Which view to paint?
Harbor Drive beach, North Haven

Where to set up to avoid the full force of the wind?
North Haven view 12" x 16" Gail Gallagher
North Haven view 12" x 16" Hugh Gallagher
Back at home, we observe the 'wrongs & rights' of our efforts. Hugh is dissatisfied with tone. I notice a glaring perspective error.  Yet, its all good. We enjoyed a beautiful afternoon and learned more about working with paint outdoors.

Susan D'alessio a local artist and member of a painting group called Plein Air Peconic also painted near this spot. Here is her painting, available at Grenning Gallery in Sag Harbor.
Sag Harbor View from North Haven 12" x 16"
Susan D'alessio

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Wooley Pond

If you've travelled Noyac Road, you have passed by Wooley Pond. The Coast Grill and Peconic Marina are both located at its edge. According to "South Fork Place Names" by William Mulvihill there actually was a man named Robert Wooley who may have owned land around the pond in the late 1600s. At that time there was a grist mill powered by the water that flowed from Turtle Pond under Noyac Road into what was then called Davis Mill Creek, now Wooley Pond. Just outside Wooley pond is Little Peconic Bay. It is not unusual for boaters to come into Wooley Pond after a day out in the bay and stop into the Coast Grill for a delicious dinner. The fabulous food and views keep the restaurant busy year round.
Wooley Pond marina
Marina view towards Coast Grill
It has been awhile since we've painted at Wooley Pond. The bulkhead has recently been refurbished so the hill down to the little motor boat is no longer there... while it was there it was a lovely vignette. The challenge that day was painting the moving boats and, as always, the changing light. Hugh created his plein air sketch at the marina and then went on to repaint the scene in the studio on a larger canvas.

Wooley Pond by Gail Gallagher 12" x 16"

Wooley Pond by Hugh Gallagher 16" x 20"
The artist Nicolai Cikovsky had a small cottage on Wooley Pond beginning in the 1940s and was also inspired to paint its beauty.
The Inlet To Wooley Pond by Nicolai Cikovsky 18" x 28 1/8"