Painting of the Week: The Sea Raven Rises (Cormorant)

January 6th, 2015

The Sea Raven Rises (Cormorant)

A yes — another resolution! I really really really want to post more often so I hit upon the idea of just telling the story of a painting and I’ll try to do it once a week! So here goes:

Every summer I try really hard to find a way to spend a week on the ocean — I grew up going to the beach almost every day and I just need that fix to feel sane and right. (A week isn’t really enough but so far no one has offered me free use of their beach home so that’s what we can swing.)

We almost always go to Maine which is one of the most beautiful places in the world as far as I can tell so far! And even though the landscapes are incredibly picturesque, I never paint while I’m there. I mostly veg out and drink gin and tonics and bird-watch. This is why I need a place with a deck over-looking the ocean of course!

Two summers ago we rented one of our favorite places on Monhegan Island which came with a rowboat! My wonderful friend Russ rowed his wife and I around Nigh Duck which is a large outcropping that sits about 1/4 mile out to sea that we often stare at as we sip our cocktails. It is covered with birds and so we got to experience a colony of double-crested cormorants up close and personal. Not too up close as 1) they had chicks and we didn’t want to disturb them and 2) cormorant poop is powerfully eye-watering stuff! And when there is several bushels baking in the summer sun, well let’s just say you want to remain as upwind as possible…

But Russ’ wife Amy managed to get some great photos and gave me permission to recapitulate some of them into this painting.

Cormorants are often considered pests or too common to really count but I think they have a certain beauty and are really amazing at catching fish and yeah well, deserve a little respect. SO here — my attempt to bestow some drama and light upon this often over-looked seabird. Enjoy!

Site by Wetherbee Creative