We loved our 12 years living in Camden, Maine. It was a time when we could walk downtown and marvel at one of the prettiest harbors in the world. We used to sit on the benches along the wharf and say to each other “Can you believe we live here?” Everywhere we looked there was a painting!
I’ve painted Camden Harbor numerous times. I have two small paintings of the harbor in my studio, and I travel back in time every time I look at them.
Capturing Camden’s Fleet was inspired by just one of those moments we had sitting on a wharf bench. We’d watch the boats come and go. The schooners all had their scheduled times to take passengers out, but at this moment many were in port. An artist was painting plein-air on his French easel, as tourists would look on charmed by the romance of it all.
The dory and its owner, a well-known ship designer and architect, can be seen daily rowing out to Curtis Island and back every day, with his wife. The two are depicted here, taking a friend with them on their daily excursion.
The Camden Hills and the town’s Library provide an elevated, scenic backdrop to the quaint harbor, creating a natural amphitheater-like setting. To the right is the shipyard where boats are serviced and moored. Also lining the far side of the harbor are New England style homes with incredible views of the harbor and town.
Out for a Sail floods me with memories too. We lived behind the white-steeple, Baptist Church. We could see the large, church clock out of many windows in our house. It took awhile before we embraced the clanging on the hour, and decided that it all added to the charm of living in small town Camden.
The Episcopal Church (small green steeple on the left) always had beautiful gardens that lined the edge of our property. It’s wonderful stonework made it an easy landmark when giving company directions to our house.
The Waterfront restaurant is right there on the wharf with the green trim and outside awnings. It has a fantastic view and is a great place to have a Maine lobster (or lobster roll) and fries.
Of course, sailing into or out of Camden Harbor was always a sight to behold. In this painting, the Schooner Surprise is heading out on a two-hour sail, while the small sailboat in the foreground is enjoying a gentle breeze.
One of the magical qualities of art is how it can transport someone to another place and time, or trigger fond memories. Artists, like myself, always hope that what we create will evoke an immediate emotional response.
Thank you as always for following my journal, my art, and my photography. Please check back soon to see what’s coming off the easel next! Thanks again!