Margaret Sutton Wailes
Sketch of the Artist
Margaret Sutton Wailes
50 Cook Cove Road, Georgetown Royalty, PEI, C0A 1L0, Canada,
Holden Lane, Topsham, Maine 04086
A decade and a half ago, my husband and I visited Prince Edward Island. We fell in love with the Island’s beauty, bought land on the Brudenell River and, within a month, began clearing our land. The following summer we moved into our cottage and became “seasonal settlers”. By July 2000, we felt sufficiently “settled” to look through the newspapers to find something fun to do. We read that Sandi Komst was giving art classes at the McPhail Homestead for anyone interested in water colour painting; no experience necessary – art supplies provided! This was a life changing moment.
One class led to another. In 2003, I participated in a weeklong art workshop – with Brian Atyeo. His encouragement and my developing confidence led me to begin to show and sell my paintings both in Concord and PEI. In the summer months I continued to study with Sandi and those artists whom she brought to Murray Harbour to give Masters Classes. Of particular note is Linda Kemp who taught me to define positive by painting negative spaces. Mostly I have painted scenes of Eastern PEI.
After retiring from a University teaching career in Boston, I was able to take classes in the Winter in and around Concord. A quick glance at my repertory points to my interest in painting scenes of Concord and PEI. When, in the summer, if the weather is not “perfect” for painting en plein aire, (not too hot or breezy or buggy) I take photographs of the PEI scenes I find compelling. In so doing, I have come to observe many changes. The old gives way to the new. Old boats, houses, gardens and trees give way to an emerging new way of Island life. I feel drawn to that which was and I try to imagine a way of life I never knew. Sometimes I meet elderly men and women who, as children, grew up in the now abandoned houses I like to paint. I paint perennial flowers from once beautiful gardens. I want to capture what remains of the old way of life – lest we forget.
Coming to painting late in life, I try not to be constrained by convention and to allow myself to experiment with subjects and media. This has led from watercolor painting to acrylics to pastels to coloured pencils, to painting in oil.
Before I moved to Maine, I was a member of Concord Art; I had a studio at the The Umbrella Center for the Arts, and have had several solo shows: at Nashoba Bakery Art Gallery; Citizens Bank and Emerson Hospital, Main Street Gallery, Concord. Over the past several summers I have shown and sold paintings at Windows on the Water, Montague; The Dunes; the Kings Playhouse, Georgetown; the Georgetown Inn; the Coleville Gallery, Souris, and Artisans on Main, Montague, PEI where I am a juried member.
Before moving to Maine, I was the Director of the Gallery at Trinity, Concord, which features renowned local and international artists.
My Studio at the Umbrella Center for the Arts, prior to 2018