‘East Wind off Seguin’

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Painting by Christopher Blossom

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A big rolling swell, lobster boats pulling traps — you can feel the deck heaving, the boats rocking and the east wind blowing off Seguin Island. Christopher Blossom captured this Maine scene and puts us right in the picture.

“East Wind off Seguin,” a 22-by-44-inch canvas from the well-known Connecticut artist, started with the play of light on the island’s flanks as dawn spread along the Down East coast. Blossom and his younger son were taking their Luders 33 on an overnighter, making a passage from Cape Cod, Mass., across the Gulf of Maine. Heading for the Sheepscot River, Seguin Island bore off to the west, catching the early sun’s rays.

“Most of my paintings come from something I see — a big thing or a small thing,” says Blossom. “I saw the light on the island, and that’s what the interest in the painting was. I wanted to convey the sense of light and movement of what it felt like to be on the water at that time of day.”

Nature holds sway here. The lighthouse is a tiny point on the distant hilltop. The lobster boats rise and fall in the swells. The fishermen are small figures. Yet the lighthouse stands, the lobster boats swim like sea ducks and the men are at their work. “It’s not necessarily where you’d want to be with an east wind, but there they are, out pulling traps, which is just what they do all the time,” says Blossom.

The water provides never-ending inspiration. “Everything I paint comes from the experience of watching the water — how boats move through it and how the wind reacts to the surface of the water,” Blossom says. “That’s what I try to transfer to the canvas.

“Maybe painting is just an excuse to spend more time on the water.”

For more of Blossom’s work, visit the J. Russell Jinishian Gallery website (www.jrusselljinishiangallery.com)

April 2013 issue

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