The Plein Air Painters Association of San Diego (PAPASAN) is currently exhibiting marine paintings at the San Diego Maritime Museum…. and one of my paintings is included!
Our group was welcomed to paint at the Museum any time during the month leading up to the show – and if you have never been there, just erase that vision of a building full of model ships out of your mind. The SDMM consisted of three tall ships, several tenders, classic sailing yachts and a submarine, all tethered to the beautiful old ferry the Berkley, which functions as the hub of the museum.
Now, you have to remember that I was occupied during this particular month with photographing three big CDI competitions and dashing off to Florida for my annual trip to Wellington. So my visits to the Museum were not as numerous, or as long in duration, as I had hoped. But each painting trip was a delight: it’s not often that one gets to stand on the deck of a submarine painting a square-rigger, for instance!
The Tuesday that I painted the Mary Jane, I had a full schedule. I’d been painting on the Berkley on Monday, and as often happens, I’d seen the painting that I’d really wanted to do only when I was nearly finished with the morning’s work. I knew I would only have a single hour to get in, paint and close up before my 10:00 appointment if I wanted to paint again on Tuesday.
I arrived 15 minutes before opening on Tuesday morning. The woman at the ticket office had gotten to know the tell-tale signs of artist-hood: spattered clothes, floppy hat, backpack full of painting supplies. She waved me in with a smile, and I trotted the length of the Berkley to the pier where there are half a dozen small boats on cradles. The only people there at that hour were busy with the never-ending maintenance of old ships, and I was set up and painting within minutes.
I had been envisioning what I wanted to paint for a full 24 hours, and it was as if my brushes were following a virtual template, each stroke logically following the last. I felt utterly focused, and yet I was watching the painting unfold with a sense of amused detachment. At the end of the hour … it was done! I was tickled, a week later, when this little charmer was accepted into the show.
Our show, “Maritime Impressions” will be on exhibit at the Maritime Museum through February 1, 2015.
This painting is available for $295.00.