Chadds Ford, PA


I spent the last *unofficial* weekend of the summer in Chadds Ford, PA, home of the Brandywine school. The drawing above is from a jazz fest/wine tasting at the Chaddsford Winery. Wine from Pennsylvania – I never really considered it. I was at this winery two years ago and I do think that the wines have improved. The whites were really nice – a clean and not too oakey Chardonnay, which I appreciate, and a few other good offerings. The reds were mixed, the Pinot Noir was not great but the Shiraz was pretty good!

The winery is very close to the Brandywine Museum, which Neil and I love to visit. I always loved NC Wyeth’s work, and the last time I came to this museum I also fell in love with Andrew Wyeth’s early watercolors. This time I was totally taken by his drybrush and tempera paintings. There was a quote at the museum in which Andrew compared his painting to a weaving of brushstrokes – I love that! These works really did have that woven quality and although tiny brushstrokes layered one on top of the other is usually my nemesis and NOT my taste, I fell in love with these paintings. We also had the opportunity to visit the Kuerner Farm where Andrew painted so many of them. Again, it promoted my thinking that you’ve got to be who you are and paint or draw what you know and love – A. Wyeth’s personality was all over that farm. Lovely. I was inspired to try a different sort of watercolor painting than I usually do – found it very peaceful to sit by the river and go after a color “weaving” of my own:


On the last day of our long weekend, Neil and I went to the Longwood Gardens – a Dupont family project. Yes, I’ll take the house – it had a courtyard inside. Wonderful! There were tree houses around the property, and even a bell tower, where I think Robin Hood must have visited at one point. It was so enjoyable to sit in the sun and draw it, marks everywhere. What a great ending to a great summer. I’m sorry to see it go, but the fall is beautiful as well, and I’ll just have to make do until next year!!


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