Blizzards and Brainstorms


All settled in to my new home and with Phase 1 of construction complete, including my handiwork, I actually had time to paint a picture. Really, I feel like it was stolen time, since there is much work to do before I open my gallery, but the blizzard has given me a bit of a respite. My frantic desire to get everything accomplished and open in short order has been put on hold by Mother Nature.With the ground frozen under over a foot of snow, with more on it’s way this weekend, there will be no parking lot or pathway to my gallery for some time. I have come to be thankful for the break, and I took advantage of that time to paint the “Fish Houses”.

Even before moving here I had plenty I wanted to paint once I was settled into my studio, but that took some time to get to that point. Before I could even move into my house I needed to stay a local motel while the bulk of the remodeling was being done.  Although living on microwave food sharing a room with my dog wasn’t exactly akin to a night at the Ritz, there was a special perk. I was staying across the street from the ocean. Most mornings Tigger and I went for walks on the beach. Amid the chaos of construction, it was indeed a peaceful and enjoyable time. Not only that, it was also located by the “Fish Houses”. I took pictures of them regularly, being weathered and interesting, thinking I’d get around to painting them eventually. Well finally I did earlier this week.

Fish Houses

“Fish Houses”, oil, 16″ x 20″

Besides being interesting subjects for painting, they were also historic with the regular plaques one might see in a place so designated. With that, a little research was in order. It seems there were 16 of these “fish houses” in this general locale dating back to before 1806. They were used by the fisherman to store their gear and bait. The houses were passed on from generation to generation. But, as time passed and the commercial fishing moved elsewhere, people began turning some of them into summer cottages. That’s when the trouble started! Yup, it all wound up in court. People didn’t have deeds to the property so there were fights about who actually owned the land on which they were built. In the end they were all removed and only these two, the Mace and Dogget fish houses remained. They were refurbished in 1988 as historic places and the land around them preserved and landscaped as a small park. A little piece of history just waiting to be painted.

My other observation, the changes in colors of the landscape and buildings as the seasons and time of day changed, were rather dramatic as I scrolled through my pictures. Theses “Fish Houses” may just become my haystacks!

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