Monday, October 18, 2010

Lions, Deer and Angels at Creek Farm

Around the turn of the century Creek Farm was a big, rambling summer cottage for a wealthy Boston family. It has remnants of formal gardens, long sloping lawns,  a rocky shoreline and a bit of pebbly beach.  It has a cove that was a damned to create a natural salt water swimming pool.

It sits on the edge of Sagamore Creek in Portsmouth. NH, looking across the water to Newcastle, NH.

Two stone lion creatures guard the entrance to what was once a terraced formal garden.

Marcus and I set up on the lower lawn to sketch and paint views of the house ...

...and the lions...

Marcus worked diligently on the details of the multi-level cottage.

My sister Ann joined us for the day.  She chose to sit on the lawn in the formal garden where she had the long view of the creek and Newcastle. 

To add to the natural show in front of us, the Blue Angels suddenly appeared in the sky to the west performing a number of dangerously daring formations.   What a thundering roar those engines make!  The stuff plein air painters see is unending! 

As the sun dropped in the sky we decided to pull out the acrylics and go for a few small sketches.
Marcus & I are taping canvas to a board to paint several different sketches on the same sheet.  This is nice simple way to do lots of studies. 

Acrylics are dicey.  Painting a la prima when them is a hoot. I'm using the regular fast drying type.  I have dry paint on my palette in minutes ! Marcus has Golden's open acrylics, so they are a bit easier  to deal with.

As we prepared to leave, a doe with two fawns wandered across the lawn happily munching their grassy dinner.  They didn't even care that we were 30 ft away packing up our paints!


  1. this looks like a really enjoyable day out there, Mary.. and makes me miss New England.
    While out painting last week, (an old dude ranch up in the mountains) a coyote wandered across in front of me, crossed the creek and went on about his way. I managed to catch a few photos of him, and it might make it's way into a painting.

  2. Deb, I totally understand missing New England..when you were moving out west I thought wow... what a change after New Hampshire! I like painting out west but love the feel of daily life in this corner of the country. Come back for a painting trip!