heron cottage retreat

Posted by on Sep 23, 2013 in Maine College of Art, Nest Nook & Cranny, Peaks Island, travels | 0 comments

Ever since I drew a heron for Susan Blackaby’s Nest, Nook & Cranny, I see them everywhere.

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I’ve spied them in the fog.

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My neighbor, Kathy Hanley, loves herons, too. She created one for her own deck.

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She and her husband, award-winning architect Will Winkelman, recently renovated the cottage they built on Peaks Island, dubbing it the Heron Cottage. For the first seven years of their marriage, they lived in this two-bedroom home while building a bigger house nearby to make room for a new family. It’s a marvelously secret spot, facing a pond protected by the Peaks Island Land Preserve.

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Marty and I had the good fortune to spend a quiet weekend there. Yes, another retreat! Getting away from routine, even on an island, is the best remedy for the soul. The cozy loft has fresh rosemary for dreaming.

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Birches hang here and there, creating a natural simplicity of space that mirrors the outside.

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The next morning, the pond view inspired me to draw.

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Right from this sunny spot on the deck.

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We took walks like the tourists do.

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Marty drew the cottage from Kathy and Will’s back yard.

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Everything felt worthy of drawing, even the willow plates.

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I made cranberry scones in the little kitchen for a Sunday morning visit from Charles Hively and Sarah Munt, also on a Peaks Island retreat a short ride away.

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Just before we packed up, I finished my pastel, which Marty quickly framed.

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Yes, I put a heron in it! We did not see one, but spotted an eagle during dinner, perched at the far edge of the pond.

We were in absolutely no hurry to leave. If you’d like to spend an affordable and secluded summer week or try a winter rental (there’s a powerful wood stove and propane heat) contact Will. You’ll LOVE the outdoor shower. Better than coffee to invigorate your whole day!

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I can’t rave enough about the design vibe, the location, the snug seclusion, and that row of decaying birches. Sublime. We gave a happy farewell to Kathy’s sculpture by the road.

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You can see more of her work in the upcoming Create II exhibit at Maine College of Art. And Will’s work is regularly featured in Maine Home & Design.

CreateII_CSwebI’m back in my own studio, inspired with new intentions, and ready to rehab. Thanks, Kathy and Will!

 

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