The Skiff
The Skiff
Watercolor
Lane Landry

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  Image size 24"h x 30"w. Add 8-10"s for matt/frame.

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This is one of those paintings that I felt I simply had to paint - I didn't have a choice. As an artist it appealed to me because it is full of contrasts; the way the dark boat is silhouetted against the grayness of the formless fog, the wonderful visual contrast of complimentary red light and bright orange slicker and the lack of form and detail in the background juxtaposed with amazing detail in the boat and then almost abstract form in its reflection in the water below.

Perhaps more importantly, this scene takes on an even more special meaning to me because the young skiff operator reminds me a great deal of my beloved brother who passed recently and quite unexpectedly to a brain tumor. He was also a very skilled and ruggedly handsome laborer who loved his work with tremendous passion and intensity. While he unfortunately never had the opportunity to work at sea (above the surface at least), as a youth he desired nothing more. He could curse like a drunken sailor (in the way that made you laugh rather than be offended) and shared my love and yearning for the freedom of the open water. And he never, ever feared "good, hard, honest work" (we're obviously Irish - which may also explain our mutual appreciation for the spirits as well). In his honor, I took artistic liberty and changed the hull identification number to represent the first letter of his name followed by his birth date.

To John, may you sail the seas in your next life; feeling the freedom of the wind in your face, the warmth of the sun on your back, the taste of salt upon your lips and the unbounded joy of a happy and fulfilled heart.