News From Cram’s Corner
With January’s arrival, I reflect on what an interesting year 2018 was here at Cram’s Corner. I had a real diversity of projects, starting with logo design for Stephanie Nugent’s new Grateful Heart publishing company.
This was followed by yet another sign commission for Bob’s Clam Hut. They’ve expanded to a second location in Portland, and wanted another clamshell portrait of Bob, only this time as a younger fellow.
It’s also been a year of reconnecting with old friends from long ago. In February, I heard from Harry Wellott, drummer of our late ‘60’s band, Hasting’s Street Opera. A music producer in Spain had read on-line about the record we’d made back then and contacted Harry, wanting to hear it. We quickly sent the producer an MP3 of the LP, and he liked it enough to want to re-release the recording. After some searching, we found guitarist Chris Nelson in Portland, guest musician Woody Carland in Rhode Island and the son of our original music publisher, now based in Nashville. I thought the occasion warranted better artwork for the cover, so I re-designed the front and back, incorporating an old photo of the band taken by Jay Schumann. Inside, we included more photos and our reminiscences of those heady days, fifty years ago. The official re-release is scheduled for January 17. This kind of thing doesn’t happen every day, I’ll tell you!
The Public Theatre in Lewiston hired my wife Susan to perform her latest play, “Makin’ Whoopie! Ida LeClair’s Guide to Love and Marriage” in the fall, and the producers felt that while the publicity photos we sent were good, it would be even nicer to have painted artwork. I gladly agreed.
I applied for a Maine Arts Commission Percent for Art grant in the new courthouse under construction in Belfast, Maine, and one of the landscape paintings I proposed was accepted. The research phase of this project was pure joy, as it allowed me to explore the backwoods of Waldo County, searching for just the right vista. To date, the 48” x 80” canvas depicting the summit of Bald Rock Mountain in Lincolnville has been stretched and underpainted, and the finished painting is scheduled for installation February 1.
We topped the year off hosting another Open Studio event, and once again it was a rollicking success. Happily, the weather cooperated, and a steady stream of folks came through, Friday and Saturday. I painted thirteen little oils for the occasion, two of which found new homes. The artwork sales plus our contact with friends old and new added up to a pretty rewarding weekend. It’s been a good year!
Happy New Year, everyone!