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Thursday, August 4, 2016

Italy - Walking the Tuscan Countryside

Hay Bale with Poppies, 12x24, oil on panel
Here is the next painting from my recent sojourn in Tuscany. The reference image was taken by Olin and posted in the groups Flickr album. I photographed a couple of versions of this scene myself. Had I not seen Olin's version, I would have been happy with mine. But my format was 3x4, so much more of a square, and his had the length that I liked better. I still cropped it to get the 1x2 format here. I punched up the poppies a bit but from the looks of it I may have to tone them back down a bit. The reds read okay in person, though.

I added the painting below from my last post because the field with the hay bale and poppies is off to the right of the road that we walked on. To put it in context. And one image was taken by the husband and the other, his wife. It was a lovely walk on a beautiful day.
Children of the Landscape, 6x6, oil on panel
The poppies were in their full glory and it brought to mind the field of Flanders and why poppies are handed out on November 11, Veteran's Day. Here is the poem from WWI In Flanders Field:

by John McCrae, May 1915, a Canadian Physician

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.


Anonymous said...

so many of our lovely landscapes cloak old battlegrounds with redeeming beauty. I think the fire in the poppies in this painting is correct and shouldn't be muted. They bring life to the broad expanse of the hayfield. The pathway that cuts across the lower edge draws my eyes outward while the trees force them to see the hills. I do like the more natural dimension of rectangular in lieu of the square. Very nice. LNB

victoriasart said...

I did not mute the poppies you will be glad to hear. The photo has them a bit more red and bright than they are to the eye and I like them the way they are. I did add more dark shadow to the hay bale to continue the line of shade from the grass and that actually made a big difference. Thank you LNB for your insightful comments on my posts.