Director's Notes ... Summer 2014

If you want to see the work of Sanctuary Arts instructors all in one place, come see our show at the George Marshall Store Gallery in York Maine called "Sanctuary Arts, Spreading the Word". The opening reception is Saturday, April 26 from 5-7 pm. The exhibition will run through June 1st with gallery hours of Thursday-Saturday 10-5, Sunday 1-5 and by appointment. The curator, Mary Harding in her letter to us says:

“I am well aware of the quality and professionalism of the artists who have taught at the Sanctuary over the years. Not only is interesting work produced at the Sanctuary but there is a creative energy that resonates well beyond the property. I believe this can be a very good exhibition and a testament to the creative community at Sanctuary Arts.”

- Mary Harding, Curator of the George Marshall Store Gallery
Landscape by Sean Beavers


By now a lot of you know I schedule classes that I want to take. Unfortunately I can't take all of the ones that most interest me. I always try to take Sean Beavers' one week En Plein Air Landscape Painting Workshop. I learn a lot because in the morning, he demonstrates the techniques for the specific images we will be painting on site. I'm a novice painter and it takes a while for things to sink in, and as a visual learner, it sure does help to observe his demonstrations, both in the studio and in nature. I am trying to decide which of Joshua Langstaff's classes to take- Atmospheric Portraits in Pencil, or Figure Painting in the Manner of Rembrandt. He's an awesome instructor, a very talented artist who can really teach.

"Isabella" by Joshua Langstaff


Chris Pothier is returning after a few years' hiatus to teach a one week workshop in August- Painting the Figure in the Garden & Studio. I've been watching his paintings get better and better. His series about his boys is so evocative of childhood, and his new series of people caught up in the business world is very powerful.

"The Fish" by Christopher Pothier


The other class I take every summer is Antoinette Schultze's Soft Stone Carving. Toni is such an amazing sculptor, tackling enormous granite pieces that get more beautiful and powerful all the time. She has the patience and expertise to encourage beginners to learn to carve in alabaster using hand tools at her studio in Eliot.

Nature Journal by Suzanne Lee


Two new instructors here this Summer are Heather Lewis who is teaching a Fundamentals of Observational Drawing class and a Creativity Coaching class, and Suzanne Lee who is teaching a couple of Nature Journals one day workshops. Heather has always been immersed in the arts with artist parents and training at the Philadelphia College of Art. She's an encouraging and nurturing person with 3 decades of experience as a visual artist. Suzanne Lee lived in NYC as a fashion designer and worked in the Orient for 25 years. She is influenced by Asian art and contemporary calligraphy and specializes in handmade books and basketry. Her books make beautiful diaries, summerhouse recipe books or travel journals.

"Child" by Heather Lewis


I welcome returning instructors Dustan Knight and Shane Chick. Dustan resumes her Outside/Inside water media class as well as Watercolor with Pizazz! She's well known for her colorful and splashy florals. I own several of her pieces and get a lot of pleasure viewing them on a daily basis.

"Berry Brook" by Dustan Knight


Shane Chick returns to teach his Printmaking classes. I'm excited to have the ability to offer printmaking as a course of study here, since Shane brought over his extra printing press. The ability to create multiples of your work and study with a gifted and patient instructor is not to be missed.

print in progress by Shane Chick


I just attended the opening of Gail Sauter's Boot Camp class at NW Barrett Gallery in Portsmouth and was very impressed with the caliber of her students' work. One student in particular has been taking classes here since the beginning, 15 years ago, and I have watched her go from very primitive scratchings to work that is so accomplished, I would like to own one. Her style has morphed from very accomplished traditional representation to surrealist abstraction to painterly and expressive representation. With Gail's help, she has really found her voice. I was talking to another long time student here who is taking the Children's Book Illustration class with Teri Weidner. She started talking about all the classes she has taken here, and how all of them have helped her be able to tackle this particular class, and how grateful she is for all the knowledge she has gained. With diligence and hard work, and these students have made the most of the training they have gotten here at Sanctuary Arts. They make me feel that this art school endeavor has all been worth while.