Saturday, September 3, 2011

"The Blue Duck"

Sitting across from the Islesford Historical Museum on Little Cranberry Island, Maine, is a structure known as the Blue Duck. It was given that name by William Otis Sawtell, founder of the museum, who purchased the 150-odd year-old building (at one time serving as the island's general store) and by doing so, acquired the foundation of what was to eventually become the core of his collection of historical artifacts. The term originated from the collection of wooden decoys that festooned the building, which were painted blue.
This is pretty much what I stare at throughout the day, either from the office window, or each time I open the museum doors. Short of the museum itself, and Sawtell's former summer cottage, it's perhaps one of the most iconic and easily recognizable buildings in the community. So it was a measure of confidence that many comments from fellow passengers on the mail-boat ferry who saw me working away at this while on the way home readily identified it.
Incidentally, this particular piece was somewhat of a challenge to create on several counts: drawing with pen & ink sitting outside in a strong ocean wind takes a bit of dexterity, as does trying to draw while sitting on a moving boat, and lastly, I don't recommend picking up a dip-pen nib after using a weed-whacker for an hour either.

This is part of my continuing series (including Gilley Beach, Cellar Window and misc. reference sketches) documenting my season stationed out on the island and experiences in Acadia.

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