For artist June Elderkin, it’s not a day unless she paints something. For the past 25 years, Elderkin has created paintings from acrylic, oils, watercolors and pastels in her Southport studio. She usually begins her day in the morning painting whatever she feels. And what she feels mostly is the beautiful outdoors of the Boothbay peninsula.
“No, I don’t have too many paintings with people. I prefer nature because it’s so beautiful,” she said. “Just look at it. It changes all the time. Rocks, trees and sky.”
Elderkin is one of the region’s most noted artists and her work is on display through September in the Boothbay Harbor Opera House. Elderkin has selected 32 past and present works painted in acrylic, pastels, or oils. Her favorite piece is “There is a Crack in Everything,” an abstract work in red and black. “When you see it you see the colors, and it changes with the light,” she said.
Her Opera House display ranges from the beginning of her career to more recent selections. “It’s really a journey through my time as an artist. There is some old, some new and some in between.”
Elderkin has loved art ever since he began drawing as a child. She has always had a passion for art and enjoys all forms of paintings. Pastels is her favorite style, most of the time. “It really depends on what I’m doing.Pastels, acrylic and oils, I like them all. I guess whatever I’m painting is my favorite,” she said. “But pastel is amazing. You just put it to paper, and wow, look at the color.”
Besides nature, she receives inspiration from a famous artist. American painter and teacher Robert Henri was a leading figure of the Aschan School of American Realism in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. In her studio, she posted a quote from Henri. “Unless you try to do something you haven’t mastered, then you will never grow,” he said.
One of the areas she has grown as an artist is painting rocks. She strives to test her range as an artist which is why she regularly uses pastels, acrylic, watercolors and oils. The various styles help fuel her passion for painting. “I’ve always done it. What I like most about it is probably it’s a way of doing something or saying it in a different way,” Elderkin said.
Over the years, Elderkin had a full-time job and raised her children, but she always found time to paint. “It’s just in you. You want to do it, and get better at it.”
The show is open for viewing from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays upstairs at the Opera House.