Early spring beach walks and whale watching

There’s possibly a big snowstorm heading our way this week but for now I’m sticking with thoughts of spring. There have been some really wonderful days for beach walking and I’ve been taking advantage of them. Hearing that right whales were being seen from the beach at Herring Cove gave me a good excuse to play hooky for a day last week to go see what I could see.

I called a friend and off we drove, stopping at Fort Hill, of course.

002and then at Marconi Beach in Wellfleet

015and finally we made it to Herring Cove where there were lots of people with binoculars and spotting scopes hoping to catch a glimpse of these marine mammal rock stars.

We were not disappointed! We watched a few small groups of right whales surface feeding, spouting and diving, showing us some good fluke views before they headed back down under the waves. My camera can show you the people but not the whales. You need a bigger lens than what I have to do that!

004 For fun I’ve begun a daily series of quick watercolors with little beach inspired sayings on them. I sell these in my online shop and will be offering prints here later in the season but in the meantime I’ll be posting them daily or close to daily on the blog. I hope you enjoy them.build your castles in the sand by mary richmond



My drawings and paintings on exhibit!

Many of you know how much I love Sandy Neck and the Town of Barnstable is now hosting an exhibit of my ink drawings and paintings done at Sandy Neck or inspired by the nature there in the large Town Council Hearing Room as well as the smaller hearing room to the side. They are hosted through the Art on Loan program through the HyArts Council and will be on view through October 18 during regular town hall business hours.

Some of what will be on display include these pages from my watercolor sketchbook, painted on location….


Ink drawings….004and some larger watercolors….

003I hope you will stop by! Barnstable’s Town Hall is on South St. in Hyannis but you can walk there from Main. St. as well.


New from my studio

I started a 90 day challenge for myself at the beginning of June to motivate myself to get healthier but also to jump start some creative ideas I’ve been fooling around with. I have about 4 children’s books in the works, a coloring book, a bunch of poems and I’m trying to get my illustration portfolio together. And oh yeah, I sell some of my work online, too, and I want to streamline that. Small things, no worries, right? Ha!

Some people suffer from lack of ideas but I think I suffer from too many. I am easily distracted, easily pulled away from what I’m working on to work on something else. The Energizer Bunny has nothing on me some days…

Anyway, here are some of the drawings and watercolors I’ve been working on.

I’ve been playing a lot with ink and watercolor so have been experimenting with shells again

008I’ve also been playing around with some pairings of inside and outside of different kinds of shells like these mussels….

023and this quahog

035I pick up a lot of feathers along the beach and wanted to try my hand at some of those. This one is a hawk wing feather from my own backyard…

029While these are gull feathers

010Right now I’m about 21 days into this 90 day challenge and if nothing else, it has gotten me drawing and painting daily again!

You can find these for sale at my Etsy Shop, Mary Richmond Design.






A Shout Out for the Legacy of Thornton Burgess

Growing up in Hyannis I spent a lot of time in the Hyannis Public Library as a kid and it was there that I discovered the wonderful world of Thornton Burgess. Peter and Mrs. Rabbit, Jimmy Skunk, Bobby Raccoon, Joe Otter, Grandfather Frog and Reddy Fox soon became wonderful friends in my imagination and helped fuel my ongoing love of nature.

“Old Mother West Wind,” the first published collection of Burgess stories, is 100 years old this year and the Thornton W. Burgess Society in Sandwich has a full calendar of events and exhibits ready to celebrate all year long. You can see the calendar here.
As many of you know I write several weekly nature columns. I also write a monthly column and occasional articles and essays for the Barnstable Patriot. Today they published my essay on Thornton Burgess and you can read it here. (scroll down until you see the illustration)
(the photo was taken by me at the Thornton Burgess Society’s Green Briar Nature Center but is not current)