Newcastle Realty in Damariscotta has teamed up with Maine Aerial Photography Services to compose a time-lapse video showcasing artist Susan Bartlett Rice creating this year’s magical pumpkin transformation on Friday, Oct. 11.
Rice, a studio painter, has been utilizing her talents to create whimsical pumpkins for the festival for the last 12 years. Maine Aerial Photography Services, mainedroning.com, has mounted a camera to take a photo every 15 seconds as Rice formulates her top-secret pumpkin idea. The photos will be edited and combined into a 90-second video available on Newcastle Realty’s Facebook and Instagram (#NewcastleRealtyMaine) pages, and on the realty’s website, mynewcastle.com, on Oct, 12.
Rice shares her inspiration: “The pumpkins give me a chance to really think outside of the box and to play with materials. I find myself scheming a top-secret pumpkin idea when I can’t sleep at night. I try to keep the idea a total surprise until it’s executed.
“What I love about painting giant pumpkins is not knowing what you are going to get for a gourd until right before the festival. I enjoy the creative challenge of thinking on my toes and working within the time constraint and in different weather conditions. I also love the camaraderie amongst the artists out on the street, interacting with local, national, and international visitors and showing off our town.
“Many of my pumpkin themes have been inspired by my daughters. They sometimes help me pick an idea. I have done Humpty Dumpty, a hermit crab, a Russian nesting doll, and Alice in Wonderland, to name a few. My 2015 pumpkin was inspired by the nursery rhyme ‘Hey Diddle Diddle,’ with the giant pumpkin as the moon. This one was fun because it surprised me that the older generations passing by knew the nursery rhyme better than the younger ones. It’s always interesting to see who can guess what you are doing, as you are creating in public.
“Through the years, I have also had fun growing giant pumpkins. For several years, I was able to paint one of the ones that I had grown myself. The biggest pumpkin that I have grown was close to 700 pounds.”
Rice’s pumpkin innovations have inspired her to create art in a much more public venue than her studio work with street art, painted murals, and sidewalk chalk projects. To see Rice’s studio work, visit susanbartlettrice.com.