The front flower mural was created with tape by Ruth Worrall and it has held up beautifully. The stunning fish mural on the side of the building was also made with tape but because it was a different surface the tape began to peel. The fantastic fish mural was designed by Lydia Giangregorio.
It’a all a wonderful experiment so we’ll see how the next fares, which by the way will be Fiesta-themed, as shared by Art Haven director Traci Thayne Corbett.
Please join John Nelson, Martin Ray, and myself for an hour of talk about the many birds and habitats found on Cape Ann. The event is hosted by Literary Cape Ann and will be moderated by Eric Hutchins, Gulf of Maine Habitat Restoration Coordinator for NOAA.
From Literary Cape Ann’s newsletter-
TRY BIRDING IN YOUR OWN BACKYARD!
Singing the praises of Cape Ann’s winged aerialists
Families are invited to join some of our favorite local naturalists and authors — John Nelson, Kim Smith and Martin Ray — for a fun hour talking about the many birds and natural habitats found on Cape Ann. Wildlife biologist Eric Hutchins will moderate this-one hour conversation.
Zoom in this coming Friday, June 19, at 6:30 p.m. for an hour of fun as you celebrate the long-awaited summer solstice. See and hear birds, ask questions, learn some birdwatching tips and discover ways to document your bird sightings using your camera, notebook, blog or sketch pad.
This event is brought to you by Literary Cape Ann, a nonprofit group that provides information and events that support and reinforce the value and importance of the literary arts. LCA commemorates Toad Hall bookstore’s 45 years of service on Cape Ann. LCA’s generous sponsors include: SUN Engineering in Danvers, Bach Builders in Gloucester and The Institution for Savings.
Order books by our guest authors at The Bookstore of Gloucester. For those interested, bird books make great Father’s Day gifts. Further down in this newsletter, you’ll find lots of great information about books and birdwatching organizations.
Thank you, Kim Smith and Martin Ray, for providing us with some of your beautiful photography to help promote this event. And thank you, John Nelson, for the annotated lists of books and birding organizations. Meet our panel!
Meet our panel!
Artist, author/blogger, and naturalist Martin Ray will talk about maintaining his fine blog, “Notes from Halibut Point,” and share stories discovered in that magical place.
Filmmaker, naturalist, and activist Kim Smith will share her own adventures chronicling Cape Ann’s vibrant bird life including the work she does advocating for the endangered piping plovers that nest at Good Harbor Beach.
Author-naturalist John Nelson will start things off with some birdwatching basics before getting into a few stories about local birds, their habits and habitats from his new book, “Flight Calls: Exploring Massachusetts through Birds.”
Our moderator, Eric Hutchins, is the Gulf of Maine Habitat Restoration Coordinator for the NOAA Restoration Center located in Gloucester. He has worked as both a commercial fisherman and government biologist on domestic and foreign fishing vessels throughout the Northeast and Alaska.
“Cape Ann Narratives of Art in Life” — A collection of interviews and images tracing the creative lives of 28 contemporary artists.
“Quarry Scrolls” (2018)— 24 photographs of Halibut Point natural life and scenes with accompanying Haiku poems
“Oh Garden of Fresh Possibilities!” — Written and illustrated by Kim Smith.
“Flight Calls: Exploring Massachusetts through Birds”
More books, recommended by John Nelson:
Sibley, David. The Sibley Guide to Birds
Kroodsma, Donald. The Singing Life of Birds. 2005. On the science and art of listening to birds, by a professor emeritus at the University of Massachusetts and a foremost authority on bird vocalizations.
Leahy, Christopher, John Hanson Mitchell, and Thomas Conuel. The Nature of Massachusetts. 1996. An excellent introduction to the natural history of Massachusetts by three prominent Mass Audubon Society naturalist-authors.
Sibley, David. What It’s Like to Be a Bird. 2020. Just published, a study of what birds are doing and why, by a longtime Massachusetts resident and renowned author/illustrator of a series of bird and nature guides.
Weidensaul, Scott. Living on the Wind: Across the Hemisphere with Migratory Birds. 2000. A Pulitzer Prize finalist study of bird migration by the naturalist and author of Return to Wild America, the subject of his memorable 2020 BBC lecture.
Zickefoose, Julie. Baby Birds: An Artist Looks into the Nest. 2016. Where art meets natural history, by a talented author/artist, former student of biological anthropology at Harvard, and keynote speaker at the 2014 Massachusetts Birders Meeting.
If you’d like to learn more or get involved in the birding life, here are some recommendations from John Nelson:
An excellent overall resource is the Cornell Lab of Ornithology website, especially the “All About Birds” sections, which includes free access to the MaCauley Library (the country’s best collection of vocalizations of birds and other animals), the free Merlin bird identification app, live bird cams, and other resources for beginners and intermediates. Some programs, like their “Joy of Birdwatching” course, require an enrollment fee, but many of their resources are free to anyone.
For bird conservation, the most active national organizations are the American Bird Conservancy and National Audubon. For state bird conservation, Mass Audubon (not affiliated with National Audubon) is most active and the best source of information, but many other organizations are involved in preservation of habitats, often with a local focus.
For birding field trips,Mass Audubon and the Brookline Bird Club both offer frequent trips at different seasons to Cape Ann, sometimes for just a morning, sometimes for a whole day. Both organizations welcome novices, and both have trip leaders who make an effort to be particularly helpful to beginners. Mass Audubon trips, generally sponsored by MAS Ipswich River or MAS Joppa Flats, require advance registration and some payment.
Brookline Bird Club trips are free, without any registration, but regular participants are encouraged to join the club with $15 as the annual dues. The name of the BBC is misleading; the club originated in Brookline in 1913 but is now one of the largest, most active clubs in the country and offers field trips across and beyond Massachusetts.
John Nelson is on the BBC Board of Directors and leads a few Cape Ann trips in both winter and spring. John reminds us that this is a strange time for beginners, since Mass Audubon has cancelled many field trips and the BBC has cancelled all trips through June, but eventually field trips will open up again, especially in places where social distancing is most possible.
The very active Facebook page, Birding Eastern Mass, has over 2,000 subscribers, from novice birders to experts. It’s a great site for sharing bird photos.
About Birding in Our Backyard
This Zoom event is for friends and families who are looking for safe, fun things to do close to home. Cape Ann’s abundance of natural wonders are here for us to enjoy and protect. Try chronicling your experiences in a new blog or a photo journal.
• • •
Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home; that wildness is a necessity; and that mountain parks and reservations are useful not only as fountains of timber and irrigating rivers, but as fountains of life.
— John Muir, from “Our National Parks”
Many locals are familiar with Mary Rhinelander and her beautiful artistry. For my out of town friends, as well as local readers who may not yet be aware, did you know Mary has an amazing website where, for super, super reasonable prices, you can purchase one of her prints?
Not only prints, but her wonderfully fun and whimsical greeting cards.
From Mary’s About page on her newly revamped website –
WHO IS MARY?
In the nursery rhyme, she has a reputation for being quite contrary. No doubt some would say in real life too.
Ever desperate for affirmation, this Mary won an art prize in first grade and that was the beginning of “making stuff.” Creating kept me semi-sane in high school and college. A sculptor student suggested I design wallpaper and I was grievously insulted. No doubt it would have been more lucrative! But he had a point. I love the strictures of graphic design and the precision of typography. My first jobs were in the art departments of publishing companies. However the freedom and mess of ink and paint tempted me back to graduate school, where I earned an MFA in printmaking. Since then I have been a practicing artist and educator.
My mixed media work has graced the walls of television shows and movies (thank you set designers), and it is in many collections, both public and private (thank you art reps). I have shown in Canada and Europe and the USA. One of the best things about printmaking and works on paper is probably also the worst: they tend to be very affordable! When a young person buys their first piece of original art from me, I am proud.
I hope you enjoy looking around. Please feel free to reach out with any questions (see contact page).
Let’s have some fun! We can’t meet for Empty Bowl Dinner this month, but you can #ShowUsYourBowls Take a picture with your favorite empty bowl (or bowls!) and share them with your friends and family. Get creative and crazy! Bowls are not just for soup–what’s in your bowl? Set the table. Strike a pose. Don’t forget to tag us with @theopendoorma #MyBowlAtHome#CommunityStrong
JOYFUL! VIBRANT! UPLIFTING! One of my favorite Cape Ann artists is Loren Doucette. Her paintings and pastels are beautiful and a joyful remedy to this time of global pandemic. Thank you Loren for sharing your artistry.
These images were borrowed from a google search but please contact her to arrange to see more.
Loren Doucette lives and works in Gloucester, MA. Loren’s work has shown in solo and group exhibitions on the North Shore regularly since 2006 and she currently works as Operations Manager of the Rocky Neck Art Colony. She received a BFA in Drawing and Painting in Spring 2013 from Montserrat College of Art where she graduated with Honors. She participated in Montserrat’s study-abroad program in Viterbo, Italy where her month-long studies demanded daily work on the landscape. It was there that her love of landscape painting grew and became her primary interest. Since 2013, she has extended her breadth as an artist and works in many styles pursuing a balance between abstraction and realism. Her work ranges from local scenes of Gloucester’s marshes and fishing docks to highly emotional abstract paintings using.predominantly Acrylic, Pastel and Watercolor. She has taught art for over 20 years at various places including Montserrat College of Art and the Peabody Essex Museum. Recently, she started an Art Mentoring Program working with eager artists in an encouraging way to help them achieve creative goals. Her work can be viewed by appointment per request at Loren Doucette Studio on Cripple Cove Studios 97 East Main Street in Gloucester, MA.