Seascapes: Family afternoon

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Richard Loud grew up along the Adams Shore section of Quincy Bay in Massachusetts, surrounded by boats and the sea. His father was master shipwright Frank Loud, a longtime builder based in the seaport town of Quincy, south of Boston. The younger Loud spent much of his time around his father’s yard, absorbing the sights and sounds before learning the science of boat design and construction as an assistant to his dad.

Oil painting by Richard K. Loud.

This training, along with a passion for sailing vessels, is evident in Loud’s paintings. His work combines an understanding of many vessel types and sea conditions with a feeling of light and atmosphere, a sense of time and place. Known for his paintings of grand sailing yachts, often shown racing in a stiff breeze on a lively sea, Loud, who is 72, captures the same sense of place and intimacy with nature in his beach scenes.

Family Afternoon depicts a family gathering at the beach on Peddocks Island — one of the Boston Harbor Islands — on a perfect summer day in 1890. “The outfits are authentic, restored turn-of-the-century clothing, and the children are my son, niece and daughter,” Loud says.

He created the 14-by-22-inch oil using photographs he took many years ago of the youngsters playing on Horseneck Beach in Westport, Massachusetts. “He bought them different outfits and photographed them over a period of three or four years,” says Laura Cooper, Loud’s business manager and a fellow artist. The painting was then done in a studio, she says.

It’s a timeless scene: children on the beach, the sunshine and salt air conveyed with light and color. And, of course, there are sailboats heeling in a fresh breeze. “The yachts in the background are Burgess 40s,” says Loud, who owns a restored 1936 41-foot Alden yawl.

Family Afternoon is a study for a much larger work, Loud says, which was the official painting for the 2015 Pops by the Sea performance in Hyannis, Massachusetts.

To view this and other works by Richard Loud visit the J. Russell Jinishian Gallery website at jrusselljinishiangallery.com or visit the gallery at 1899 Bronson Road in Fairfield, Connecticut.

This article originally appeared in the June 2017 issue.