About Me

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Spofford, New Hampshire, United States
Jeff Newcomer has been a physician practicing in New Hampshire and Vermont for over 30 years. Over that time, as a member of the Conservation Commission in his home of Chesterfield New Hampshire, he has used his photography to promote the protection and appreciation of the town's wild lands. In recent years he has been transitioning his focus from medicine to photography, writing and teaching. Jeff enjoys photographing throughout New England, but has concentrated on the Monadnock Region and southern Vermont and has had a long term artistic relationship with Mount Monadnock. He is a featured artist in a number of local galleries and his work is often seen in regional print, web publications and in business installations throughout the country. For years Jeff has published a calendar celebrating the beauty of The New England country-side in all seasons. All of the proceeds from his New England Reflections Calendar have gone to support the Pulmonary Rehabilitation Program at the Cheshire Medical Center. Jeff has a strong commitment to sharing his excitement about the special beauty of our region and publishes a weekly blog about photography in New England.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Burdicks Show : Great Art and Even Greater Food




Graze the Fence, Alstead, NH

Earlier this week I hung a show of New England photography at the Restaurant at Burdicks in Walpole New Hampshire. Burdicks has always been one of my favorite exhibition locations and with the holiday spirit all around it is a great time to be offering the work. Burdicks is an elegant restaurant with excellent french inspired cuisine in the heart of beautiful historic Walpole. In a previous article I explored the desirable qualities of the perfect exhibition site which includes, good lighting, a flexible hanging system and an attentive audience, and Burdicks fulfills many of theses attributes.

 



Audience

Ferrier's Touch


Restaurants that encourage relaxed dining provide an atmosphere which is conducive to looking up from the food and, at the risk of sounding pretentious, Burdicks seems to attract customers who are more likely notice and appreciate the art on the walls. I have nothing against a busy pizza parlor, but in those venues my concern is less about a beautiful display of my images and more about keeping the the pictures high enough to avoid being splattered by cheese and beer.

 







Hanging
Orchard Wall, Dublin, NH

I hate pounding nails into crumbling plaster. Burdicks has a nice hanging system that allows easy adjustment of the pictures for uniform spacing and height. From the restaurant's perspective, hanging systems such as this require an initial expense, but they are simple to install, allow neat professional displays and, perhaps most importantly, avoid the periodic need for costly repairs to the walls. I am still amazed by how many venues still allow artist to damage their walls with haphazard and insecure nails. 







Let There Be Light 

  The one problem with the Burdicks has always been the lighting. This is a common difficulty in restaurants, that try to maintain a dark romantic atmosphere illuminated by candles, and leaving the walls in murky shadow. Burdicks attracts some wonderful art to its wall. It is an important part of the decor and to hide it is a disservice to the artists as well as to the patrons (see below).  I have long argued that spots casting focused light on the walls could enhance the interest and beauty of the environment without intruding on the soft ambiance at the tables. 

Romantic Dining  Low Light of  Previous Show

Onward, Chesterfield, NH



For this show there has been an improvement in this issue. The restaurant has been recently remodeled and, at least for the holidays, sparking lights, attached to networks of branches have been suspended from the ceiling. The effect is festive and provides a modest general increase in illumination which I think may be continued after the holidays. It is improvement, but a few spots would make an amazing difference.

 









Choosing the Show
Multnomah Falls, Oregon


Selecting images for any show is always a struggle. I rely on lists from previous exhibitions to give me an idea of about how many pictures will be needed and then I bring about 50% more than seems necessary. I have displayed my work at Burdicks four or five times so I knew I needed between 12 and 14 pictures. I wanted to show only new images and it was a great opportunity to work on prints of some of my more recent work. I ended up printing 5 new pictures and framing another that had been previously matted.










Super Moon, Saybrook Lighthouse

I'm not sure that it was a clear intention, but the images are mostly of recent autumn color in our region. Two prominent exceptions are the image of the majestic full "super" moon rising behind the Saybrook Lighthouse in Old Saybrook Connecticut and the mystical Multnomah double waterfall along Oregon's Columbia River valley. I alway agonize about the pictures I have to leave out from a show, but in the end I was very pleased with selections and how they fit into the wall space. 


Giant Sugar Maple, Guilford, Vermont

Of Course It Comes Down To the Food AND the Chocolate

Burdicks Chocolates Cafe
Many of my exhibition venues turn out to be restaurants and in talking about the attributes of a great site I always come back to the food. After lauding L.A. Burdick's cuisine for lunch and dinner it would be tragic to neglect to mention the chocolate. Connected to the restaurant is L.A. Burdick Handmade Chocolate. Burdick's chocolate is renowned. 




Add caption
The shop and cafe have also been remodeled and is a warm comfortable environment for a cup of coffee or a diet crunching dive into the many tempting deserts, pastries and, of course, chocolates in all sorts of configurations. It is fast becoming one of my favorite places to settle in to write. I just grab a coffee and try to find a corner to hide from the treats.



Ashuelot Floaters, Keene, NH



 

So if you are near Walpole during this month, drop by Burdicks for great food, amazing deserts, and of course, spectacular photography. The hours for the restaurant and chocolate are listed below. Both are well worth the trip 

For more pictures of Burdicks and the full show, check out the gallery on my New England Reflections web site:

Restaurant at Burdicks Show




























  

 







And if you find yourself short of 2016 calendars for the holidays, the  
 is available at the Walpole Grocery, right next door.

 











Jeffrey Newcomer
Partridgebrookreflections.com

2 comments:

  1. I always look forward to your pages. Not being a camera buff nearly as talented, your work gives me great pleasure. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  2. The first photography looks more beautiful .

    ReplyDelete