Digital chart art? Come to Rockland!
As a young island boy, I spent a lot of time looking at maps and charts, plotting courses to find buried treasure, and later as a way to find my way in the world. In recent years, I’ve been drawn to the strong graphic images on my GPS screen as I navigate the local waters. This piece is painted on a rudder from a North Haven dinghy, the oldest one-class design in America, donated by J. O. Brown on North Haven. The image is a loose interpretation of Rockland Harbor around The Atlantic Challenge dock area taken from my GPS map. I like the idea of combining a rudder, the part of a boat that provides direction, with the GPS map imagery that tells you where you are, so you can choose where to go.
Who but a true artist could see a bigger picture on a plotter screen, and help us see it too, with paint and even words? I wouldn’t be surprised if Garmin bids on this Blue Chart inspired piece by Eric Hopkins (one of my local favorites, and you can see why in this online gallery). He’s one of many fine artists who have contributed their efforts to the 44° LATITUDE art show, a benefit for Atlantic Challenge. You can bid by email but better yet come to Rockland for the gala Aug. 16 auction. In fact, if you cruised here this week, you could first take in the fabulous excess of the New York Yacht Club—mother ships, Breton Red trousers (required !) , and all—as they race in from Isleboro on Tuesday. Then you could watch the wonderfully eclectic Maine Boats, Homes & Harbors Show set up for its Friday opening (and Sunday’s riotous Boatyard Dog Trials). The harbor, per usual, will be alive with not just yachts but ferries, Coast Guard, fishermen, and small craft like the teaching fleets emanating from Atlantic Challenge’s Lermond Cove dock. Fog and/or rain? Probably some days (it is Maine), but you could head over to Knight’s Marine and check out the work of Hopkins and many others, and plan your auction stradegy.