Saturday, January 28, 2012

Maine Mutt Mansion, again?

Autumn Farm
Original oil painting  20x16"
by Susan Roux

Things have really been brewing here...

You can't expect to see me sitting idle for too long. My mind never stops. As soon as one thing ends, a new project begins. I'm not just talking about a painting on my easel. It's true of everything in my life. I can't ever seem to keep things running on an even slow tempo. It seems every time there's a lull, I get cranking on something else to stir things up.

In a few weeks several artists will be gathering at an oceanside mansion for a retreat. I organized it last year and it was so popular and fun, we've decided to return again. I can see this could easily become a yearly event.

We're five artists this year, with a possibility of a few daily visitors setting up their easels. We arrive with all our baggage and quickly set up our paint stations. The mansion is huge with lots of great windows bringing in ample light for everyone. We'll be painting from early in the morning, hardly sitting with our cups of coffee, until dark. The creative energy locked in winter walls will grow as the week progresses. Conversations revolve around art. Books are brought it. Our minds are opened to new ideas, new ways of looking at things. Stimulation is high. I remember having trouble sitting for a tea break in the afternoon.

I wasn't the only one with this problem. We worked to nearly exhaustion. The double jacuzzi was perfect to rejuvenate ourselves. I was surprised how locked up my muscles became. I didn't realize how much I clenched my knees as I concentrated to paint. It wasn't until I backed away from my work and found myself almost unable to move. I've dreamt about that jacuzzi many times over the past year...

It really was difficult to take a break. Our minds became so cued in to painting, that sitting for a few minutes away from our work seemed impossible. My tea kept getting cold. No sooner had I left my easel to sit quietly in the next room holding my hot cup, it would beckoned me back. Sandy laughed at me, telling me to go take a break! But in all honesty, she had the same problem.

The mansion is in Maine. This year we're very pleased and excited to have two artists join us from Scottsdale, AZ. You may already know Amy Whitehouse and her daily blog. She, along with an artist friend, will be flying in to experience our wonderful artists retreat. I'm looking forward to meeting them and discussing art together.

Evenings are spent sipping wine in front of the large fireplace. Our favorite evening is Champagne Thursday. It's when we invite lots of people to come visit. I'd like to open the invitation to all of you. It begins at 5:00 p.m. on February 23. We're the last house on Shore Dr. in Freeport Maine. Bring champagne and a nibbler. It was a great social evening last year and hopefully will be even better this year! Come and experience the creative energy that builds within the mansion walls. It's unbelievable.


I don't often post my paintings from my classes. It isn't a demo actually, because I paint right along with my students, explaining things as we go along. My Thursday afternoon class just finished this fall scene. I love to paint wet into wet, but the restrictions of painting within class time and stopping until the following week, create quite a challenge for me. Class did really well with this, keeping the bright back trees receded and the large maple forward. The red roof needed to also be neutralized so the red branch dipping in front of it would read correctly. Great job students!

I have a new beginners class starting February 2, from 6-8 p.m. at EL High School, Auburn. If your interested or no someone who is, please call Adult Ed at 207-333-6661 to enroll. I'd like to thank all my wonderful students who work very hard at achieving great things.

You will come to Champagne Thursday, right?


  1. santé! salute! prost! des expressions pour vous accompagner au champagne!

  2. Autumn Farm is so beautifully painted, Susan!
    I wish I was going to the retreat! Sounds wonderful..and so tempting! Enjoy!!!

  3. Je sais que tu es très impatiente de te retrouver là-bas... J'aurais aimé partager ces instants avec vous toutes, mais nous sommes si loin!... cependant attention à la petite mouche!...
    Plein de bonnes choses à vous toutes... gros bisous

  4. Wow, such collective beautiful energy in one space - great things abound. Sounds delightful - enjoy!


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