“Big Boats, Little Boats” in Camden

RipplesTodd Bonita’s “Ripples,” oil on canvas, 36″ x 48″

The Camden Falls Gallery opens the busy summer season with “Big Boats, Little Boats,” a show featuring two popular marine artists through mid-July.  Both masterful oil painters, Kirk McBride and Todd Bonita share a deep connection with all things nautical.  Their subjects involve those who ply the sea for work, pleasure, or sport – and specifically the boats that carry them.

Working out of doors up and down the Eastern Coastline and out of his home studio on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, Kirk McBride is a well-known and highly respected plein air painter. His work has been juried into numerous shows including “Paint Annapolis,” Plein Air Easton, and The Laguna Beach Plein Air Invitational.  His outdoor oil sketches and photographs are often used as a point of departure for large scale studio paintings.

Todd Bonita’s work, at first glance, is more reticent but is powerful in a different way.  He subjugates his brushwork to bring his subject matter to the fore. That subject matter harks back to his New England coastal childhood. Dories, skiffs, tenders, rowboats – call them what you will, Bonita elevates them to a mystical place apart.  His keen draftsmen’s eye for fine detail imparts the work with an almost photographic realism.  What photo-realism often cannot convey is depth of feeling.

“Big Boats, Little Boats” is on display at 5 Public Landing in Camden. More information can be found at www.camdenfallsgallery.com