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Islands, Pines & the Rocky Coast

Frenchman Bay on the north side of Mount Desert is scattered with islands named the Porcupines. They have pine and hardwood forests on them with rocky cliffs and sandy beaches trimming their edges.

I sketched view this from the overlook on Cadillac Mountain. The tide was half way out and you could see the sandy skirts around each island.


The next day I was headed up the mountain in the late morning. The bay was still calm but the wind was starting to pick up out on the water. From the mountain you could watch the wind patterns across the bay as it went from still water that was iridescent yellow green to wind whipped dark blue.


This is Great Head with a huge cloud bank lifting off it.


On the loop road heading toward Thunder Hole you enter an alley of pines.


Great Head and all the ledges facing the open ocean were bathed in foam this day. The water had long ribbons of creamy froth all up and down the coast.

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The Scent of Pines

Vicki & I headed up to Acadia National Park for a week of painting in late June before the tourists arrived. Eagle Lake was dreamy and moody when we pulled in to paint . Clouds were tearing across the mountains tops and it was misty with rain threatening. I loved the atmosphere and layers of subtle color.

The lake was still and the reflections were lovely.

There were bands of huge pines all along the eastern shore that were ragged and leaning from many years of strong wind.

As the clouds barreled across the mountain tops cracks would appear in the fog and you could see bright sunlight and bits of blue for a few seconds.

The next day we painted on the Schoodic peninsula which is the wilder, remote part of Acadia.

It was still overcast but brighter and no rain fell.

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Acadia National Park ~ Rain in Paradise

Acadia National Park was in fog and rain for days on end.

We set up to paint on the shore of Eagle Lake. Everyone was on vacation and the carriage paths were full of families biking in the rain. Who cares! The little kids loved riding through the big puddles getting soaked.

My rain set up on the beach of Eagle Lake.



Vicki painted from the carriage path parking lot at Eagle Lake.
I’d dash out in-between the raindrops to make sketches of Eagle Lake.

The tide was rising on Schoodic Point but the sun didn’t break through the bright fog.

I came home with 16 field sketches and Marcus looked at them and said, “Who wants a painting of fog and rain? “ Too funny!



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Day III ~ Turbats Creek & Walker Point

Turbats Creek is a real treasure ! It’s a piece of Maine that used to be the norm around here. Up north you can find fish shacks but I didn’t know there were any around here till Paul, John & Stapleton painted them on Wednesday.

While painting at Walker Point the fog drifted in and out from a big fog bank out over the open water.





The view looking south from Walker’s Point toward Thunder Hole.



Turbats Creek has a village of fish shacks on stilts that at high tide are sitting over water. They are used as cottages for the summer months. Awesome places! A local told me they are called “sweep outs”.



Three of us were painting down by the boat launch. This location was so popular this week I think 1/3 of the painters went to paint there.


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Spring in Acadia National Park

Acadia was spectacular these past few days! It wasn’t too crowded and it appeared I was the only artist painting in the park. Visitors from all over the world stopped to chat and snap a picture. The weather changed on a dime. When it was sunny it was great! The temps were chilly up high and along the coast. The wind picked up as the cold front headed in. My easel blew over once – I didn’t have it tucked in enough behind the car. The hikers and bikers were having a blast as they were building up some heat with their activities.


Here is Frenchman’s Bay in the late morning before the wind started tearing through. The water has an iridescent luminous quality till the winds build. You can catch it in early am and at dusk.


Eagle Lake looked fabulous when the clouds cleared out.


I stayed at my favorite place the “artist’s motel” – The Robbins Motel on rte 3 on the way into downtown Bar Harbor. Its old fashioned, cheap and super clean (spring special $32 a night).I ran into Jack (the owner) as I loaded up the car for a day out in the wilds.


Sunset from the Blue Hill overlook on Cadillac Mountain is a big event. I stopped by to scope out the location and noticed the sun and sky colors were getting nice. Then as the light started to get dramatic the parking suddenly filled up. Piles of people went out on the rock ledge to watch as the sky put on a show. It was a festive event.


I painted 2 5×7’s till the sun went down then headed over to the other side of Cadillac to watch the village lights come on all over Frenchman’s Bay.