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Show Day 1 at Montauk

yesterday’s painting of Montauk lighthouse

After helping Samuel setup the artshow for the morning, the the folks from the Hampton’s Television Station came to do an interview with him about his work. It was amazing to watch the interview. Samuel was cool as a cucumber while being interviewed about his work.


I followed West Lake Drive to Montauk Harbor, and spent a few hours painting. Everyone was taking their boats out for a fun-filled memorial day weekend. Around noon, the sky got dark and the temperature dropped, so I wrapped up the painting and returned to the apartment.


After checking on Samuel, and having lunch, I went to the sand dune beside the apartment and painted a beautiful painting of the ocean, a sailboat, and the dunes.


After painting, I did a little bit of jogging into the sunset, until my knee injury started to hurt (it’s still sore from the marathon)

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On The Road

I have been on the road for 3 days with Samuel Ruder helping him drive and setup for an artshow at Montauk, NY. After spending one day crossing the mountains, we took another day to bum around the Delaware River section of Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Many famous American Impressionists have found inspiration in this area. We first stopped in New Hope, PA. A town famous for being rich in artist studios and galleries. There was a particular view of the town that I wanted to paint. It was the view across the Delaware from New Hope, and it was frequently painted during the American Impressionist movement in the late 1800’S and early 1900s. The 2008 view is very different. There is a nice view of condos from New Hope…not very inspiring. After paying $6 to park and walking around New Hope for less than 5 minutes, we both decided that we would rather drive along the river and find something to paint.

While driving by an old 1800s grain mill, Samuel suggested that we stop there. While looking around, about 10 artists parked and began setting up their easels in the area. It was a good sign that this was a good place to paint.


We had stumbled into Ty Hodanish’s Art Colony. Ty is a native of Bucks county and accomplished painter. We had the opportunity to meet him while he taught a plein air class. In fact, he was very interested getting one of my new plein air easels by artwork essentials Halfway through my painting, it rained.


I continued to paint in pouring rain, and when the rain finally stopped, I was aggrevated with the progress of the painting, so I wiped the panel clean. I was not going to leave the site without a painting, so I started a new painting…and it rained AGAIN! After perseverence, I had a nice painting to show for the afternoon.


Further down the road, we stopped in Frenchtown for some coffee. (Yes, I have fallen off the no caffeine wagon!) Walking through the small river town, Samuel and I were both attracted by the artwork displayed in the window at the Netherfield Gallery.


We went inside and were pleased to meet Jessie Krausse, the owner of the gallery…and artist of the work we admired! Inside, she had one of the most beautiful paintings I have ever seen. I can’t remember the title, but it was a riverscene painted in orange, and had a sun dancing in the sky…you will have to visit her gallery and see it for yourself!


We continued along the Delaware river, and stopped at a park that was picture perfect.


It was an old canal lock, with a stone arched bridge built in 1829, and a magnificent view of the river bending around a curve. Samuel and I both found spots to paint. After less than an hour of painting, the skies opened again, and it started raining. There was pretty much one cloud in the sky, and it kept dumping on me every time I tried to paint! Plein Air painting never felt so much like an endurance sport!

After a very plesant drive, we reached the Interstate, and started our drive through New York City. I agreed to drive, and Samuel navigated. We slipped through the top of Manhattan, and across Long Island with very little problem. The stars were aligned just right!

At Montauk, we slept in, and then had breakfast at Mr. John’s Pancake House before setting up for the art show.


After the show was set up, I took my paint and bike to the Montauk Point Lighthouse.

I followed a trail that led to the rocky shore with a great view of the lighthouse.



The painting came out well, so I painted another smaller picture of the lighthouse from a different view before returning to the apartment.

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Asparagus Festival at Mayslick, KY

me at asparagus festival in Mayslick.jpg
After living in the area for 8 years, I finally had a chance to participate in the world famous asparagus festival in Mayslick, KY.

mr and Mrs asparagus.jpg
Jim and Jennifer Gleason from Sunflower Sundries

I haven’t met any nicer folks than the people I met at Mayslick. Nice as can be…and they really love asparagus!

Too much asparagus!
There’s so much asparagus flying around…watch out! A piece may get stuck in your head…

Like this poor dog!!!

There is a large Amish community around Mayslick. While at the festival, a friend wanted to get some pictures of the Amish…but didn’t want to offend their “no modern technology” lifestyle. We pretended to take pictures of each other…while really catching candid shots of our old-fashiond neighbors. I won’t name names, but watch out for paintings with Amish folk in them from one of Maysville’s best watercolor painters

meWithRibbonMy asparagus painting won for the humorous category in the Asparagus art category. LOL!!! I didn’t want to accept the prize because I knew the judge…but in a small town where everybody knows everybody…it’s hard NOT to know the judge. I ended up keeping the prize, and donating the painting to the festival’s permanent asparagus art collection. I think everyone was happy!

What a great saturday! I can’t remember when I had so much fun!! I won’t miss it next year, and neither should you…

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I’ve become a bicycling/painting maniac

Today, as soon as I finished my noon appointment at the studio, I strapped my painting gear on the bicycle and pedaled down route 8 along the Ohio river. Outside Dover, Kentucky is a picturesque covered bridge that crosses Lee Creek.


I stopped to paint the curve in the road that leads to the bridge.


I continued riding my bike until I reached Augusta, KY. I had not been to Augusta for over a week, and it was good to run into friends there and catch up with the latest goings on.

The weather is not predicted to be so nice for the next couple of days, so maybe I will stay in the studio and get some work done!

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Mayslick Plein Air/Bike Trip

I had a busy morning at the studio, but after having a late lunch, decided to go for a bike ride to Mayslick…home of the Asparagus Festival (this Saturday!)

outdoor Studio_fits On Bicycle

After a nice ride, I arrived at Mayslick, where I did some sketching before deciding to paint a winding road with rolling hills and black barns in the distance. It has suddenly become very green out here in Kentuckyland. I have always thought green to be a difficult color to work with, so a green field with green trees was a fun challenge.

mayslick Plein Air

I think the painting was a success. I am very happy with the result. Unfortunately, the shine of the oil makes for a not so hot photograph. You should come to the asparagus festival and see the painting in person!

Mayslick Road

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On The Road Again…at Last!

The weather forcast for Saturday was perfect, so I decided to take my paints for a bike ride. Mycle’s Cyles in Georgetown, OH was sponsoring 2 rides that day. A fast 30 mile ride, and then a slow and mellow 15 mile ride afterwords. Slow and mellow…that’s me!
On the way to Georgetown, I passed through Ripley, OH. Every Saturday, they have a farmer’market . This market is unique because the vendors are only allowed to sell things that they have been grown locally. I bought a couple of blueberry muffins, and a smoked cheddar cheese made from unpasteurized milk.

On the road to Georgetown, there was a beautiful spot with a field, a hill, and a few houses and barns in the distance. I stopped to paint the scene. Halfway through the painting, I was passed by the fast group of cyclists returning to Georgetown. Two cyclists stopped and talked some…then I hurried to finish the painting.


At Mycle’s Cycles, I joined Doug McKisson for the slow and mellow ride…a 18 mile loop outside Georgetown. Passing through some of the prettiest countryside I have ever seen. I will have to go back by myself sometime so I can stop and make a painting.


On the way home, I took a different road, Old 68. I stopped at a beautiful set of grey and white barns sitting on a hill with a long view of the country.


What a great day on a bicycle!!!

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Ohio River Valley Art Guild Show

Today was the annual Ohio River Valley Art Guild Show at the Kentucky Gateway Museum Center in Maysville, KY.

My goal was to photograph the artists with their work…but I missed some very good artists…my apologies!

Betsy Adams with Chinese Brushwork

Ruvonna Bevard with plein air painting of the Ohio River

Sha-Reese Cunningham with 2 portraits.

Sue Gorman with Barn Quilt

Donna Huber with painting of Maysville’s Bridge

Kim McKisson with watercolor paintings of Amish Girls and Cows

Claudia Moose with Chinese Brushwork

Tom Ross with landscape photography

Me, Ken Swinson, with a painting of chickens and a happy cow (thanks Jim Moose for the photo)

It was a great show…Thanks all for coming and supporting local art!  Sorry I didn’t get to photograph everyone…there is some great talent in this area!

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Catching Up

Things have been happening so fast, I haven’t had much time to keep everyone updated.

Friday was the opening at the FUSION gallery in Belleview. In spite of some rain, there was a great turn out, and sales were good.

Here I am at the gallery with Cincinnati’s most creative couple. Artist, Samuel Ruder, and his girlfriend and Weaver, Deb Cline. (photo by Dan Copsey)

Thanks again everyone for your support at the show!

I stayed in Cincinnati with my sister and brother-in-law, who were in town for the Flying Pig Marathon.

My sister injured her ankle while training for the race, but I ran with my brother-in-law, Neil, Sunday morning.

Marathon FinishersPhotos by Carrie Frank

Neil is new to running… we finished the race in 4hours 30 minutes (23 minutes faster than his last race…and Cincinnati is a harder course!) A very impressive time for someone who has been running less than 2 years!

The Cincinnati Enquirer wrote a nice article about me you can read here.

Photo by Stevie McNeil

Tuesday, I was still sore from the race, but wanted to see the Delta Queen docked in Maysville. I hobbled over to Limestone Landing and after a few hours, had a great painting and sunburn.

Then I hopped in my car to visit Artcroft and empty the kiln.


I had some pots that will be displayed at the Ohio River Valler Art Guild show at the Kentucky Gateway Museum Center. The opening is this friday from 5pm-9pm. As always, it was nice to see Robert and Maureen and meet their current resident, Rob Ehle, a writer from San Francisco, CA, who recently was awarded the Stegner Fellowship.

If you are tired from reading all this, you can probably guess how I have felt lately….but I sure am having a great time!