Sunday, August 25, 2013

ONE Week Countdown to NH & Monhegan Island!

Seagull, Otter Cliffs, Acadia National Park, Mt. Desert Island, Maine
6x6 colored pencil on black paper

I'm getting very excited about my up coming trip!

First visiting friends in NH and going to the Hopington State Fair! Piggies and Cows and Goats and Sheep! Love it!

Then it's off to Monhegan Island. A wonderful pilgrimage if you're an artist.

(From the Boston GlobeLocated 10 miles off the mid-Maine coast, the island has been drawing artists from around the world for more than 150 years. Giants in the US art world have been inspired by Monhegan, including George Bellows, C. K. Chatterton, Randall Davey, Robert Henri, Rockwell Kent, Edward Willis Redfield, Frederick Judd Waugh, and three generations of the Wyeth family: N.C., Andrew, and Jamie.
“All the major American artists were here at one time,” said Ed Deci, director of the Monhegan Museum. “You can actually study American art by studying Monhegan art.
Have I mentioned that I'm excited?
Monhegan (from what I've read and seen) is a wonderful place - no cars or bicycles, sort of like Fire Island only less beachy and more wild and rocky. I'm staying three nights & two full days in the rustic and lovely Monhegan House
So, here's my challenge - for all the years I have taken workshops and classes, my car has never been more than a few hundred feet away. Wherever I was, there was always plenty of room for the "what-ifs." What if I'd rather use pastel today? or What if I want bigger or different paper? A cooler with lunch or extra water were always near by.

Paring down my supplies isn't too tough, I can easily and happily carry just a watercolor sketch book, travel brushes, some pencils and watercolor palettes in a little zip bag if I'm at the beach, birdwatching in the local preserve, or bike riding.

In fact, for many years, I've not bothered with an easel. I just threw a blanket on the ground or sat at a picnic table. I even figured out how to use the bike rack on my car as an easel.

This trip to Monhegan (and my obsessive need to bring my Cheap Joe's Field Easel), made me reconsider how to pack for plein air. It's time to channel my inner McGyver-girl-scout-backpacker and figure out how to get everything I need for a day of hiking and painting into one compact streamlined unit.  

Stay tuned as I bring you: My search for the perfect backpack (ie: one that fits the field easel) and what goes in the pack.