“Man’s integration with and interdependence with nature was clear to me at an early age with the immersion in the agricultural environment a stone’s throw from home. This gave me an early foundation and appreciation for the bounties that surround us in the natural environment.” Janis Sanders has always found his inspiration from the outside… Read more »
“I need the mountains and the ocean just like I need to paint,” she claims. “It is this power and energy in nature that draws me to continually paint it. I go into my zone when I am painting. The hours pass by, and I am totally absorbed. It is the same connection as when I am surrounded by mountains or looking out to the water. I am at peace.”
As much as the staff loves to see Floral Spigots come through the door with Patrick, it is very difficult not to fall in love with the new Diving Ducks. The colorful croquet balls that center each of his birds adds a sense of whimsy that is hard to deny. These birds were created this fall for the holiday season.
It is on occasions such as these he sometimes finds his work can swing in a totally unexpected and untried direction. Moving from the soft ethereal landscapes to a far bolder use of primary colors. Bold abstract color works are where he started as an artist and still feature heavily in his output, but they still contain the softness and flow of his representational landscapes.
“A goal this past year was stepping out of my comfort zone. This included painting larger, and trying some subjects I’ve been contemplating and meaning to get to, especially the beach rocks,” says Alex. “The larger scale allowed me to loosen up, and I can breathe in the spaces working larger. I realize my idea of “larger” is still others’ small works, but for me, these 12 x 12s and especially the 20 x 16 feels big.”
“I only painted a few paintings a year for the next few years but all were inspired by summers in Biddeford Pool. It wasn’t until 2011, I decided to have a show,” says Williams. “I knew I wanted to do something in Biddeford Pool, but I didn’t know what. We ended up throwing a cocktail party for all our friends. Many friends had no idea I painted. Needless to say, it was a big success.” This inspired her to want to go further with her painting and changed her focus from graphic design to painting.
LeCours, who works mostly in oils, takes inspiration from the natural beauty of his native New England. “The first time I painted outside, en plein air, in Portsmouth Harbor, I realized that nothing can replace the excitement and energy of reacting to the elements and painting directly,” he says. “Feeling the sights, sounds and smells and reacting to them with ‘mark making’ was a true epiphany.”
“I don’t like to paint the obvious. I like the viewer to look and find new things like the shapes of colors, textures, playful shapes and scribbles. The vast areas of sky or beach or water give me the room to play,” says Williams. “When looked at up close, all these interesting and unexpected shapes and subtle textures and colors can be found. Yet from a distance, it is clearly a sky or beach or water.”
Witbeck has been working on figure drawing almost every week for several years. The drawings and sketches, however, piled up in his studio, unseen by anyone but him. Then one day, that changed. “I thought it would be fun to turn some of them into paintings. An artist should paint what he loves,” grins Witbeck. “ ‘Nough said.”
Even though David Witbeck now lives in Rhode Island, Maine still holds a large portion of his heart and his work. He has so many memories he has created here and visits as often as he can. “Last October I spent a couple weeks recharging my Maine batteries and explored,” says Witbeck. “I wandered amongst the pole wharves of Friendship and Stonington, and visited many bays and harbors along the coast.”