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Route 4

Route 4 is: a series of paintings featuring the best known barns and landscapes along Route 4 in Southern Maryland.

These days we often find inspiration in the scenes we see from our cars. There is something remarkable in that there are so many views and places of interest along one road. It says a great deal about this county and the people who live here.

I started recording Route 4 imagery in 2005. There just aren't that many roads out there in Maryland with that many barns and farm views as this one has.

I liked Calvert County's vision for this road, in an excerpt from their 1992 Vision Document, one I looked up on their website in 2010, it says "Vision 1: Route 2 and 4 look like parkways with limited access and landscaping along the sides except through Dunkirk and Prince Frederick. There are still areas of real farmland and forest visible, and all new development is clustered and buffered from Routes 2 and 4." This is a true statement and implies a strong vision for the road that is also called Solomons Island Road. For those traveling down to Solomons Island, this road makes it a beautiful drive to a great destination.

For those that commute, the road and the way Calvert County is, makes it worth the commute. Slow down and glance about. Drive carefully and respectfully. Take care of this road and support the Calvert Farmland Trust and organizations like it. We who live here are all in this together.

My original inspiration for this series comes from the the '80s when I would drive down to Calvert Cliffs in order to hike to the beach and hunt for shark's teeth. Since that time I have moved down to Calvert County and I think one of the things that has drawn me down here is the road itself. During the course of the years Route 4 has seen much development, but it seems that consideration is being given to the preservation of certain open spaces and structures along the way. As I travel up and down the road, these sights remain, and change only with the seasons.

It is a pleasure to see the plowed fields, the new crops planted, and then growing, the corn, getting higher and higher until it seems to reach the roof of the barn behind it, then to see it cut, and with that the texture of the stubble, the neat rows of growing and then harvested rows fanning out as I drive by. There are certain trees I look for, champions who have survived into this decade, and landmarks that frame the landscape given to open fields, backed by trees, and ever changing skies above. There are special houses, with their driveways and mailboxes coming right up to the road, that say they were around when life moved along a little bit slower than we do now.

Two years ago I decided to record what I was seeing from the road photographically. Deb McClure joined me on this adventure, and we traveled up and down the road in the spring, summer, fall and winter and captured as much as we could. Also with the help and patient company of my husband Craig and my children, Daniel and Courtney, I was able to capture these scenes which most of us only get to see at 55mph.

These are not static views, there are parts of the imagery that are blurred that open up the possibilities that the paintbrush revels in, streaks and strokes of color in motion. With every new image I set to canvas, I am inspired, as a painter, by the texture of the fields of grass, of the woodlands, and fields of yellow beans or green corn, and tobacco.

I would like to inspire the artists of Calvert County to join this project, to portray their own perspectives and views of this road. The more you look, the more you see, and inspiration and imagination take hold and off you go! What a wonderful adventure!

Many thanks to all those people who work so hard to preserve the land around us.

 

Thank you!

 

click here to see a larger version of some of the painting's locations.

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The Route 4 Comment Board

It started at Artworks at 7th
It's been to Friday's Creek
It stayed a month at Annmarie

Where now?

Let me know if you would like to host this board at your business offices or shop along Route 4. I am looking for layers and layers of commentary about this Calvert County Road.

route 4 panel state 1

this is the first state


this is the second state
after showing at Friday's Creek
and at the Cafe Gallery at Annmarie Garden in 2010

see a detail, below

Suzanne Shelden Home Page

Route 4 Series

Appalachian Series

Washingtonian Series

Southern Maryland Series

Beach Town Series

Birds of 2014

Raining Cats and Dogs

A Gala for Cat Lovers

Nature

The Spirit of the Horse

Fantasy

Abstracts

 

Showing in 2016

 

Annmarie Sculpture Garden
and Arts Center


ARTSFEST 2016
at Annmarie Garden
on the tent circle
www.annmariegarden.org


 

Calvart Gallery

At CALVART GALLERY


CalvART Gallery
Prince Frederick Shopping Center
on Route 4 at the 231 intersection
Wednesday thru Sunday
11 to 5pm
410-535-9252
www.calvartgallery.org

 

 

 

At FRIDAYS CREEK WINERY

Fridays Creek Wiinery

join the artists at OPEN HOUSE at Friday's Creek WinerySaturday, September 26th
3485 Chaneyville Road
Owings, Maryland 20736
410-586-3236
www.fridayscreek.com

 

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The artwork found on this website is available directly from
Shelden Studios


contact us

 

reproductions available

 

 

 

 

Media:

Acrylic Painting

Oils

Drawing

Collage and Mixed Media

Watercolor

Photography

Computer Digital

 

 

thank you
for your
patronage

The Route 4 Paintings:

Route 4 Scenes, as seen, from the passenger seat of the car, at 55mph.
Dear Calvert County, this is, or was, your commute, your drive, your daily scene,
your home.

 

old route 4

you n me
Talbott Road, the (half-a) V tree and the Pumpkin Barn in 2012
acrylic on canvas 9 x 12"
currently available
$250

 

route 4 - Corn God Fall

The Corn God - Fall
acrylic on canvas
18 x 18"
currently available
$300

 

old route 4

Red Barn at 5pm
acrylic on canvas 24 x 72"
currently available at calvART Gallery
$1,200


old route 4

Mornin' Commute
acrylic on canvas 24 x 72"
currently showing at Dreamweaver Café
and available via calvART Gallery or the Artist
$1,200

 

red barn

Red Barn — Grey Day
acrylic on canvas 24 x 30"
$550

 

Route 4 - 2014 View Driving North into Calvert
acrylic on canvas 12 x 36
Currently Available
$425

 

rt4- younme again

you n me
Talbott Road, the V tree and the Pumpkin Barn in 2008

acrylic on canvas 8 x 24"
currently available
$250

 

rt4 church

Route 4 Church
acrylic on canvas 4x5"
Currently Available

 

old route 4

Fairview
acrylic on canvas 24 x 36"
Private Collection

old route 4

Fall Favorite
acrylic on canvas 4 x 5"
currently available
$125

 

old route 4

White house north of Sixes Road
acrylic on canvas 4 x 5"
currently available
$125

 

Owings Field

Owings Field
acrylic on canvas 24 x 36"
currently available
$750


Fall Fallow

Fall Fallow
acrylic on canvas 24 x 30"
currently available
$550

Trott's Sunset

Trotts Sunset
acrylic on canvas 20 x 40"
currently available
$750

Two White Roofs

Two White Roofs
acrylic on canvas 24 x 40"
currently available
$750

 

old route 4

Red Barn at 7pm on Solomons
acrylic on canvas 24 x 72"
SOLD!

This image was captured the same date, time and place as 'View Driving North into Calvert' which is shown below..from on top of the bridge, just look right.

Buy reproductions on Fine Art America

 

Red Barn in Winter

Red Barn in Winter 2010
acrylic on canvas 20 x 40
SOLD!
Private Collection in Maryland

 

old route 4

Old Route 4
acrylic on canvas 24 x 72"
SOLD!
Private Collection in Maryland

Route 4 back in the 60's. Looking north toward Chaneyville Road.

I welcome CDs with imagery of Historic Route 4 and Calvert County.

 

rt4 sentinel

The Sentinel
2010
acrylic on canvas 20 x 42"
Private Collection

Route 4 - 2005 View of Flag Barn
just south of Chaneyville Road
acrylic on canvas 12 x 36
private collection

NOTE: the barn on the right has been pulled down since 2005,
and the property is now for sale, in 2016.

 

The Promise

The Promise
Acrylic on canvas 24 x 30"
Private Collection

These trees, which I believe to be a row of sugar maples, strike a surprising, delicate balance, a dialogue between the trees and the traffic. I put no cars or trucks on the road, but in actuality, we rarely see 30 seconds with out traffic at this time of the day. I call this one The Promise because these trees stand like a contract between the farm and progress.

 

 

old route 4

Broomes Island Oak
acrylic on canvas 40 x 40"
framed size 48 x 48"
Private Collection

 

 

Blue Highway

Blue Highway
acrylic on canvas 40 x 40"
Private Collection


The view is of Route 4 Southbound, just past the billboard sign out of Dunkirk.
Returning home after a day trip around DC.

 

 

Route 4 - 2008 View Down Into Solomons
acrylic on canvas 12 x 36
Private Collection

 

Primary Color

Primary Colors
acrylic on canvas 20 x 42"
Private Collection

Just south from Broomes Island Road, looking left, you will find this barn.

 

A collection of Small Works ready for the holiday show

 

old route 4

Red Barn at 6pm
acrylic on canvas 8 x 24"
Private Collection

 

route 4 - Bowen Barn

Bowen's Barn - Foggy Dawn
acrylic on canvas miniature
4 x 6"
private collection

 

rt4 sorghum morning

Sorghum Morning
acrylic on canvas 8 x 24"
Private Collection

 

rt4 norfolk dairy

Norfolk Dairy Farm
acrylic on canvas 8 x 24"
Private Collection

 

old route 4

the white road
acrylic on canvas 24 x 24"
private collection

 

rt4 fox headquarters

Fox Headquarters
acrylic on canvas 6 x 12"
Private Collection

 

chaneyville house

Chaneyville Farmhouse
acrylic on canvas 4 x 5"
Private Collection


Corn God

The Corn God
acrylic on canvas 18 x 18"
private collection

This one greets you at the intersection of Route 4 and Broomes Island Road. The head has gone, but the body remains, and the corn is really, really good, as are the tomatoes.

 

 

 

old route 4

Spring Favorite
acrylic on canvas 4 x 5"
private collection

 

rt4 redbarn 8am

Red Barn 8am
acrylic on canvas 4 x 5"
Private Collection

 

route 4 flag barn

The Flag Barn
acrylic on canvas 4 x 5"
Private Collection

 

rt4_red barn

The Red Barn
acrylic on canvas 8 x 24"
Private Collection

 

old route 4

Just North of Sixes Road
acrylic on canvas 24 x 30"
private collection

This farm can be seen just north of sixes road on the Northbound side of Route 4.

 

rt4_redbarn september

Red Barn in Corn
acrylic on canvas 12 x 36"
Private Collection

 

Dunkirk view

Yellow Bank Road, Dunkirk
acrylic on canvas 30 x 60"
Private Collection

You see this view driving south on Route 4 just north of Dunkirk.
Bean fields at noon.

 

 

the pumpkin barn at talbott road

The Pumpkin Barn
acrylic on canvas 24 x 72"
private collection

This is the barn at Talbott Road, Route 4 north.

 


January 30th, Winter Drive

January 30th, Winter Drive
acrylic on canvas 19 x 40"
private collection

This is a winter view of the "Support Our Troops" Barn in Owings.

 

 

Red Barn at 6pm 2010

Red Barn at 6pm in 2010
acrylic on canvas 24 x 36"
Private Collection

The Red Barn is situated just north of the Route 2 intersection on the right.

 

 

talbott dawn

Talbott Dawn
acrylic on canvas 24 x 36"
private collection

Headed North on Route 4, just past Talbott Road. A glance back.

 


Annapolis, junction 1 mile

Annapolis, Junction 1 Mile
acrylic on canvas 12 x 36"
Private Collection

One thing I personally love about Route 4 are the ups and downs.
This is a first attempt at showing this characteristic of the road.


Lusby

Lusby
acrylic on canvas 46 x 46"
Private Collection

All the Route 4 images are taken from the front passenger seat at the speed limit. It's so that the views I am capturing are those we see every day as we drive up ad down this road. On this day, we drove by this lounge chair set up right by the road. Our guess is that it fell off of someone's truck, and that some one else came along and got it off the road and set it up with a good view. It is located just at Coster Road going north, and ahead is the blue sign for Lusby, the stop light, and the PBP tower.

 

45 MPH

45 MPH
acrylic on canvas 30 x 60"
private collection

The light ahead is Stoakley Road at Calvert Memorial Hospital.
This is a rainy, wet morning. but in the distance, the blue sky of day peaks through.

 

 

The White Barn at Lord Baltimore Drive

The White Barn
acrylic on canvas 24 x 30"
private collection

Located across from Lord Baltimore Drive, this is one of the first paintings I made in the series. I consider it one of the most significant views visible from Route 4.

 

 

The Barn next to Trotts

The Barns next to Trotts
acrylic on canvas 24 x 24"
Private Collection

I like Trotts and I love this barn and the way the rows of crops line up in front of it. Mums?

 

 

metamorphosis

Metamorphosis
acrylic on canvas 24 x 42"
private collection

As you drive north in the morning this scene catches your eye on the right just after you leave Prince Frederick. This painting is a faithful reproduction of a row of old trees that have been overtaken by vines and underbrush. And no, it's not a marching band of stuffed animals, no sharks, no dogs, no hairy people, just stumps and vines and tendrils, right?

 

Red Barn at Six PM

Red Barn at Six PM
acrylic on canvas 24 x 84"
private collection

The red barn shows up on the right just north of the Route 2 intersection. This barn has a number of faces depending on what time of year you see it. I enjoy watching the progress of the crops in the field. The corn got high enough in this image to obscure the barn door. This was a tough view to catch, taken from the passenger side of the car, moving with traffic, going south.

 

 

Red White and Blue

Red, White and Blue
acrylic on canvas 24 x 40"
Private Collection

This barn can be seen just behind a line of trees along Route 4 just south of Broomes Island Road. Like a constellation, it is only visible from November through April. I should name it Orion.

 

 

bowens

Bowens
acrylic on canvas 24 x 42"
Private Collection

I am not sure the Bowens own this property, but it is the field situated right behind Bowen's Florist just north of Prince Frederick. The barn and the little house speak to one another, they are connected, and it is very difficult to picture one without the other. It is also easier to see this scene as you drive south. Catch a glimpse of it just before you enter town.

 

Dawn Impression

Dawn Impression
acrylic on canvas 8 x 60"
Private Collection

This view can be found just north of Bowen's Florist. The fruit stand has been taken away.

 

chaneyville

Chaneyville
private collection
acrylic on canvas 24 x 84"

These trees are just south of Chaneyville Road. They have a special place in this series because of their proximity to the road and the intimacy with Route 4. Here is a peaceful scene, sometimes with a field of wheat behind, sometimes with corn growing high. A pastoral scene, right up against the trucks and cars and traffic. It's a delicate relationship, which, at the moment, is quite balanced.

 


field of curiosities

Field of Curiosities
acrylic on canvas 24 x 60"
Residing at Calvert Pines Senior Center

We call this one the field of curiosities because there are several objects in this scene that do not seem to belong, for instance, load palettes, huge wooden spools for cables, big wooden? boxes, hay bales and objects like that. At first we thought, well it could be a target or archery field. Well, we were close. Turns out it's a paintball field. Sign of the times and what is fun in life, right? It hasn't altered much in five or so years at least. It is on the right as you travel south on Route 4. It is a great field, I have another version of this taken in the summer, which I plan to paint as well.

 


at talbot road

Talbot Road
acrylic on canvas 24 x 60"
Private Collection

Talbot Road intersects Route 4 just where the road divides north
of the Calvert County line. I also call the painting the V tree. V for victory, V for peace. The tree just fell apart this fall, and is now part of the past. It was an unusual tree and I am very glad I caught it before it fell away. Note: the final half of the V tree fell in the snowstorm of 2016, so the tree is no longer there.

 

 

 

a detail from the comment board
currently seeking a new spot
Acrylic on canvas

 

 

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