Recess in Springtime - Signed & Numbered Limited Edition Print Size 12" x 18" (Edition size: 950) Price: $75
Springtime blooms fresh and lively at the Amish one-room schoolhouse, where the brightness of nature is reflected in that of the children's clothing as well as their happy and carefree demeanor. With the strength of the colors available from my pastels, I tried to summon up that brightness in 'Recess in Springtime'
In February, 2000, Dr. Rhonda Clements, President of The American Association for the Child's Right to Play, used this painting as the cover of her new book 'Elementary School Recess: Selected readings, games, and activities for teachers and parents'.
Recess at First Snow - Signed & Numbered Limited Edition Print Size 14" x 18" (Edition size: 950) Price: $75
When snow first covers the ground, all children, Amish or 'English', get excited. They can't wait to just be out in it, to walk around, even roll around in it, to throw snowballs, to make a snowman...you get the picture.
A Minute 'til the Bell - Signed & Numbered Limited Edition Print Size 17" x 22 1/2" (Edition size: 900) Price: $100
A minute 'til the teacher rings the bell and recess will be over. A schoolgirl jumps off the porch for one last run around the building; two friends whirl each other around; another girl runs over to get in on the secret being shared. Each child makes the most of the brief recess.
Recess Remembered - Signed & Numbered Limited Edition Print Size 13 1/2" x 22" (Edition size: 950)
In the evening of the day, in the evening of his years, a country gentleman revisits the one-room schoolhouse of his youth. On the shaded side of the building, mist begins to gather, and in that mist, or else in the mists of his mind, the gentleman begins to see forms... the forms of his schoolmates wafting about...
look, there's Tommy and Zeke playing leapfrog...there's Tyler, the little boy who always had to go behind the outhouse because he couldn't wait...and there's my sweetie, Nancy, jumping rope with all her friends!
Unfolding before his very eyes is recess remembered!
Sunshine & Shadow - Signed & Numbered Limited Edition Print Size 11" x 14 1/2" (Edition size: 1500) Price: $75
Often in the summer time, women of the Amish community in my neighborhood get together for quilting. The colors they weave into these quilts bespeak those same bright purples, blues and blacks as the clothing they wear. The pattern on this particular quilt is sometimes called 'Trip Around the World', but more often, 'Sunshine and Shadow'.
The Tavern in the Snow - 950 Signed & Numbered Limited Edition Print Size 13 1/2 x 22 in. $150 (unframed)
On the square in my hometown of New Wilmington, PA, sits one of the primary landmarks and oldest buildings in the area: the Tavern on the Square (ironically named, since New Wilmington is a "dry" town). Intrigued by the warmth exuded from within the "tavern" during a recent white Christmas, I painted several studies, culminating in the pastel painting which gave rise to this print.
Volant Mills - Signed & Numbered Limited Edition Print Size 16" x 20" (Edition size: 950) Price: $75
In the nearby town of Volant there stands an old grist mill whose millrace emanates from the Greater Neshannock Creek. Built in the 1800s, it was once a working mill, but today serves as the hub for the busy tourist town of Volant. It was rescued from destruction just in the nick of time in 1985 when a local businessman bought it. He told me that, had one more joist rotted through, the entire mill would have crashed into the river!
This is one of several works I have done in pen & ink. I use a style called 'bubbly pointillism', wherein large circles are used to illustrate lighter areas, and smaller circles darker areas.
At Cascade Park in New Castle, PA, stands the shell of a carousel building. Once the focus of townspeople on weekends and holidays during its heyday in the '30s and '40s, it echoed with music and the laughter of children. Now it lies empty, inhabited only by shades of times gone by.
My mother posed as the foreground figure; it was the last time she posed for me before her death in 1996.
Banks Bridge - Signed & Numbered Limited Edition Print Size 16 1/2" x 21" (Edition size: 950) Price: $75
One of only two original covered bridges remaining in Lawrence County, Banks Bridge crosses the Greater Neshannock Creek less than a mile upriver from my home. The victim of vandalism and weather-borne decrepitude, it was recently restored, plank by plank, at a cost of nearly $300,000. Now it is whiter and more solid than ever, but still suffers from vandalism, particularly around prom night.
Barn Raisin' - Signed & Numbered Limited Edition Print Size 16 1/2" x 21" (Edition size: 950) Price: $75
Perhaps the most obvious symbol of their cooperation and interdependence, the barn raising is a fun social event for the Amish, so much so that they call it a 'frolic'. The speed with which a barn can be erected--just one or two days--is a testament to the effectiveness of the Amish way of life.
Light Cover - 950 Signed & Numbered Limited Edition Print Size 16 1/2 x 21 in. Price: $75 (unframed)
A sudden, deft turn to the right and horse, buggy and driver enter their driveway for the hundred-yard dash back to stable and home. It was just a quick trip, so he wore only a light coat; with the light cover of clouds, the sun hasn't poked through much and, as the cool tones in the light cover of snow suggest, it'll feel good to get back to the home fires.
Senior Terrace - Signed & Numbered Limited Edition Print Size 16" x 20" (Edition size: 950) Price: $75
My small, western Pennsylvania hometown of New Wilmington is home also to a small college named Westminster. At one end on the quadrangle stands an old, ivy-covered stone building called "Old Main", which houses administrative offices; among them, that of the college president. Just outside the president's office lies the patio called "Senior Terrace", where the graduating seniors traditionally receive their diplomas during a later, much warmer season.
Vespers - Signed & Numbered Limited Edition Print Size 16" x 20" (Edition size: 950) Price: $75
One wing of Westminster College's main administration building, "Old Main", is a chapel, emphasizing the college's commitment to the spiritual as well as the intellectual education of her students. The college choir has traditionally been one of the best in the area; many a time I have walked past the chapel during choir practice and heard heavenly sounds emanating from within. During the Christmas vespers program, when snow covers the ground and the lights are on inside, that heavenly feel is amplified.
His chores no more distant than the reflection of farm buildings in the pond, a young lad concentrates, for the moment, on just one thing: his prize catch! For a little while he has left the workaday world far behind. He's gone fishin'.
Mornin' in May - Signed & Numbered Limited Edition Print Size: 11 1/2"X 8" (Edition size: 950) Price: $50
Rays of early sun highlight curls of golden hair, the rich purples of a small dress, a line of multicolored laundry pinned like jewels in a row. You can almost smell the dew on the green, green grass. It's a mornin' in May.
Dashing Through - 1500 Signed & Numbered Limited Edition Print Size 16 1/2 x 27 in. price $100 (unframed)
"Dashing through the Snow..." it's a Christmas activity as well as a carol. This scene happens to be outside Von Steuben's headquarters, near Valley Forge, PA, some time in the latter nineteenth century, but it could be anywhere and any time. The joy it evokes, however, exists mainly in the heart; hopefully, all of the time.
Twilight Frolic - 1500 Signed & Numbered Limited Edition Print Size 16 1/2 x 23 in. Price: $100 (unframed)
Amish children don't get as much playing time as "English" children do. They have to wait until dinner is eaten, devotions are held, cows are milked, and chores are done. Which is why, when they do play, it's almost like a big party...the more, the merrier. In fact, the word "frolic" is used to describe big social events, whether work or play.
National Historic Landmark (Thompson House) - 950 signed & numbered limited edition prints. Size 17 1/4" x 23" Price: $100
Built around 1887 in New Wilmington, Pennsylvania as the home of Professor S.R. Thompson, this beautiful Victorian mansion was eventually acquired by Westminster College. In 1985 it was placed on the National Register of Historic Places and now houses college administrative offices. The architecture is representative of the Queen Anne/Eastlake stick style.
Lone Star II - Signed & Numbered Limited Edition Print. Size: 17" x 23" (series size: 1500) Price: $100 (unframed)
Quilt making is a time-honored pastime, social event, and home industry among the Amish. I've been intrigued both by the vibrant colors used in their quilts, and by the themes ascribed to them, such as "Double Wedding Ring", "Sunshine and Shadow", and "Lone Star", to name just a few. The spectacle of a beautiful quilt drying on the line, accented by dark and brightly-colored clothing, is a common but inspiring element of the landscape in my neighborhood and throughout Amish Country.
Turtle Rock - Signed & Numbered Limited Edition Print Size 17 3/4" x 21 1/4" (Edition size: 500) Price: $100
There's a time in midsummer when the Pennsylvania flora is at its apex, and the countryside is dominated by varying shades and tints of green.
That's about the same time that this group of Amish children took a Saturday afternoon off from chores to relax on 'Turtle Rock', their favorite fishing hole, where they hope to catch some bluegills for dinner.
How many turtle images can you identify?
Glorious, Grand & True ... 2002 - Signed Artist Proof Limited Edition Print Size 17" x 23" Price: $150
On January 21, 2002, Westminster College turned 150 years old! Glorious, Grand & True is a commissioned print made especially for my alma mater, Westminster College in New Wilmington, Pennsylvania. My connection with Westminster goes all the way back to the founding fathers, of whom my great-grandfather, John Anderson McGill, was one. My grandfather, Ralph Gibson McGill, graduated in the class of 1902. McGill Library was named in his memory. My father, mother and both of my brothers are Westminster College alumni as well. My wife, Merrianne, works at the college in the office of development. She is currently pursuing her degree in Public Relations.