you might recall that my brother and his wife asked me to paint something for them. they said I could paint whatever I wanted which was interesting AND scary. I said yes and spent the better part of this spring wondering and worrying about what to paint. honestly, I didn’t think I was ‘good enough’ to paint something other than an abstract landscape, especially on anything larger than 8” x 10”.

I switched from painting with pastels to working with oils in my tuesday painting workshop so I could re-learn the basics. I also added a different painting class to learn the basics of painting light and shadows, form, fabric, etc. I worked really hard to go against what I thought was the easy route but really, I was just getting frustrated.
dewey admiring the view

a little backstory: I’ve spent most of my summers growing up in a sleepy little community on the south coast of massachusetts. about 30 years ago, my parents purchased a home that sits next to lovely salt marsh with an incredible view. for years (years!) my father has worked tirelessly to restore this salt marsh - he coordinated with the local natural resources trust, worked with area ecologists and marine biologists, managed the fundraising, oversaw the construction of the new culvert, and has enjoyed its return to its shiny, briny self.MARSH MADNESSthroughout this spring, I’d try different things on a giant canvas in my studio. it was a nice break from painting tiny needlepoint canvases and it was good practice mixing colors and making marks. each week the canvas would look a little different and started to take shape. it turns out I wanted to paint a landscape after all. I needed to paint the salt marsh so my brother can have this view of the marsh, too, in his home.
‘The Marsh That Dewey Saved’ , 2012, oil on panel board, 40” x 30”

I’m really happy with the way this turned out and I’m so thankful for the time I had to get here. I was finally able to show my brother and his family this week while they’re in town and they love it, too!! I still need to varnish before I can ship it but this beauty is going to love living in alabama.

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