Schoodic Point - One of My Favorite Places, Downeast
"Gulls at Schoodic Point" 24" x 30" oil on canvas © 2011 Brian Kliewer
The composition in this painting is quite different from what you see in a lot of my paintings. The gulls were more or less in the positions you see them in here...with minor changes. I really wanted to show the depth of the scene. But without a horizon line, that's not easily done. A couple of pairs of the gulls overlap, which helps. But mostly they exist alone. This is why I introduced the couple in the upper left. Yes, they were there but I hadn't decided for certain I wanted people in this painting until I had it well laid out.
The painting isn't about "people" so I had to watch how I handled things. It really is about the gulls. But the couple balanced out the dark blue tide pools in the lower part of the painting, and helped balance the composition as well. I wanted something there that wouldn't "compete" with the birds. I think I got it.
As you can see by the picture below, I "warmed" things up quite a bit in my painting.
I took this picture several years ago. Gulls are really quite interesting. Bold and cautious and not unwilling to land on your head! Yes, this one did land on this woman's head. The photo isn't retouched. But gulls will be bold like this if they think food is nearby. I remember one showing up at a picnic. It swooped in and grabbed a hotdog right off the picnic table. Then a couple of minutes later, it came back and stole a hamburger patty! Plenty of people around. It didn't matter; it wasn't "phased" at all.
Schoodic Point is a lovely place on the coast of Maine. It's one of my favorite spots, "Downeast." Another location right nearby is Grindstone Neck. Check both out if you get a chance.