Thursday, August 20, 2009

Home Again, Home Again.....


I know I have said it before but it bears repeating.......nothing beats a road trip.
Got back from Door County Sunday evening. For the past three days I have felt jet lagged. I know, I drove, but still, there is an exhaustion there that I can't shake. It may be the fact that I am not used to painting that hard for that many days. I averaged four a day for a week and some of the others did better than that.
We found out that Door County is a big onion that you have to peel the layers off. When we came in we had just passed through Sheboygan. Sheboygan was awesome. Big, giant dairy farms everywhere with these huge gorgeous barns about every 100 acres. It is a painters dream so we knew Door County had to really step it up. At first it didn't.
With help from Dawn Whitelaw, who had been before, we started finding these little tucked away places and these century old barns and farms. If you peel the onion and get back in the cracks and crevices of Door County it is beautiful. As you can tell we spent a large portion of time in the interior painting the barns and farms. Met some fantastic people who gave us a bit of history on it all. Had one lady come out to talk to us and she had been born and lived in the same house for 72 years. She is what you would picture Mother Nature looking like at 72. She insisted we take some beets and onions with us so we relented and said yes. Apparently she walked around the house, pulled them out of the dirt and just handed them to us. There was still dirt falling off them when she threw them in the truck. Later that evening we met two couples in Peninsula Park and were able to barter those beets for Mike's Hard Lemonade. Not a bad swap.
The folks in Door County have done a very good job of restricting unchecked development and have kept the area "quaint". It's small little fishing villages and parks along the coast and rural in the interior. For a painting trip there is plenty to keep someone very busy. Also the area around Algoma and Keewaunee is beautiful. We spent a little time down there and we could have spent the whole week and not run out of things to paint from barns and farms to bays and docks and fishing boats and little towns. If you ever get to the area I would suggest going down there at least a day or two. It would be worth it.The art school they have in the top floor of Barnsite gallery would be worth the trip. If you're anywhere near it ask Dick Bell to give you the guided tour. It's impressive.
I guess now, for the next few days, I have to get out of "post trip funk". After a trip like that it's hard to get motivated around here. I usually remind myself I have a mortgage to pay and that generally snaps me right out of it.

6 comments:

Gary said...

Beautiful paintings, Kevin. And you really captured what appears to be a "cooler" summer atmosphere than we have here in the South.

Kevin Menck said...

Thanks Gary.
It was muuuuch cooler. We were able to paint all day, something I haven't been able to do around here since May.

C. Ousley said...

Hey old man. Glad you found some subjects up there to occupy your time. Looks like you snagged some keepers.

Robin Roberts said...

Wow. Look at all that great work from a few days in Door county. The proof that a trip to door county is worth it. I was just down south taking my daughter to college in Greenville SC. And all I could do is think about all the great material for painting down there. I guess we just get bored with the same things all around you everyday. I don't get the opportunity to paint very often though, so there is still plenty of material around here for me to hone my skills on. Anyway, great body of work. I enjoyed looking through them.

RR

Kevin Menck said...

Greenville, SC is a gorgeous area. Would love to paint there myself someday.

Lisa said...

Sounds like you had a great painting experience. Getting to meet some locals must have helped add a sense of character to the location, as well.