My love affair with Maine

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“Pemaquid Point Light” watercolor on paper 22″ x 30″, 1975

Every year for the last 47 years I have traveled to Maine to paint, eat lobster, and enjoy the cool temperatures that few places in the country offer in July and August. So here I am again and I must confess my enthusiasm has not dwindled. Many artist have come to Maine, Andrew Wyeth, Milton Avery, Edward Hopper, Robert Henri, Winslow Homer, Alex Katz, Rockwell Kent, and Georgia O’Keeffe to name few, for what I suppose similar reasons.

I now divide my time in Maine between painting, teaching, and living the good life with Diane and Rothko “The Wonder Dog”. We eat well, visit friends, go to museums and generally enjoy life.

While looking back at some of my paintings that have been inspired by the people and places of Maine I become aware of changes and consistencies in my painting ideas and approaches. Although the style changes the constant is my dedication to the emotion content of the place.

Beautiful Pemaquid Point Light is more recognized by its stark whiteness and dark trim than by the romantic colors I choose to convey the poetry I feel for the place. My color choices convey my affection and nostalgia for Maine summers.

“Pulling Together” watercolor on paper, 1976

This couple in this painting were recently married when I painted this. These two native Mainers work the hardscrabble life of lobster fishermen. The idea of two people working together is the essence of marriage. This image was inspired by a photo provided by a friend. When last I checked the couple still live and work on Monhegan Island.

 “Motel Chairs” acrylic on canvas 30″ x 40″ 2016

There is great story written by E B White describing his journey each spring into Maine on US #1. Along the way I am certain he was aware of these ubiquitous metal chairs that sat outside the tidy little motels that lined the hi-way. Old and rusted by now with layers of chipping paint there is poetry in the shape and design of these beauties, and memories of summers gone by.

“Portal to Mystery” acrylic on paper 24″ x 24″ 2017

The spruce trees on Pemaquid Point are being devastated by a disease that leaves the tree trunks with only skeletal, broken limbs, bare of needles. This painting is a reminder of the fragile environment, even something that seems so old and invulnerable as the hemlocks and spruces. It is scary, and sad, and beautiful, all at the same time. My intent is to portray the whole feeling.

“Arm Chair Maine” acrylic on paper 12″x 12″ 2017

An update to the motel chairs is the Adirondack chair. They could be the official ‘state chair’ of Maine! Their high, reclining back make them comfortable, but I believe it is the wide flat armrests most suitable for holding a cocktail that makes these chairs so popular. Maybe because these chairs are literally everywhere, that I feel they need to be painted with exaggeration of color, texture, and placement. There must be surprises. Depicting the well-known, the familiar, in an unexpected way, you see and experience it as something new .

If you like my enthusiasm and insights into the process of making art exciting and personal, I invite you to join me at Pemaquid Point for my Skip’s Famous Maine Painting Workshop! Two week sessions in June or July.


At The Hotel Pemaquid, New Harbor, Maine.

June 18-22 or June 25-June 29, 2018

July 9-13 and July 16-20, 2018

This will be our 41st year making Art at Pemaquid Point, Maine!!

A lot of amazing creativity and growth has happened here under Skip’s watch. It is a truly remarkable group of artists in a very special place.

Skip’s Workshop is held in one of the most beautiful places on earth. Pemaquid Point is the site of the famous, oft-photographed lighthouse and spectacular rocks with salty waves crashing on them. The tang of sea air greets you, perfumed by the wild roses that bloom everywhere. It is an energizing and inspiring place to immerse yourself in making art. Join a group of kindred spirits who journey to land’s edge for a memorable summer of creativity and camaraderie.

Here is the updated info for Skip’s June and July 2018 Workshops.

Please read through this information letter in its’ entirety. Even if you are a repeat student, there are important changes you need to know about.


2018 price for 1 week workshop, tuition only, is $550 and for 2 weeks $950.

DEPOSIT to confirm enrollment in the class is $300

The BALANCE is due in full the first day of class.

Lodging is not included in workshop tuition. Most students stay at The Hotel Pemaquid, where the workshop is held. Contact and arrange reservations with Judy and Charlie Dugan, innkeepers of The Hotel Pemaquid.


First, email me at to confirm that there is room in the class. Class size is limited, so check before sending in a deposit. NOTE: To avoid overcrowding in the July session, priority is give to students registering for 2 weeks. When 20 have registered I will accept 1-week enrollments on a first come first served basis. Deadline for 2 week enrollment in July workshop is March 30, 2018

Send a check for the deposit amount $300 to:



MT AIRY, MD 21771

Skip Lawrence

Skip Lawrence

I love everything about painting. I love feeling the paint, seeing a rich color spread under my brush onto a surface, and the play between colors coming together. I love watching my idea take form until a painting finally says “it” and I am surprised and delighted every time. I love sharing my art and knowing that someone is moved by it.