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Thursday, September 15, 2016

Paintings I've Not Done Yet--Giverny

Copyright, Jim Lane
Giverny, likely one of the most famous bridges in the world,
certainly number one in the art world. Monet's graceful green bridge 
crosses over the little pond, which is, in reality, a small stream.
Some three weeks ago, I began a new series offering the free use of some of my better photos taken as source material for future paintings. In the realization that I'll probably never get around to painting most of them (due to shortness of seasons and other reasons). The first two installments dealt with landmarks and cities. If you see something here or there you'd like to paint just send me an e-mail with our name, website URL (if you have one), along with the an indication of which photo you'd like to paint. When you finish the painting, I'd appreciate your e-mailing me a high-resolution photo for my archives along with any comments you deem appropriate. By all means feel free to depart from the photo as you see fit in terms of composition, cropping, style, and color. Photos will remain under copyright protection. They are not being released to the public domain. Permission for use as painting source material is granted on an individual basis. These photos are not to be reproduced or used as photographic works of art themselves. Please request, only one at a time:
Not to intimidate anyone, but these are a few of the many
Monet paintings of his famous bridge. Except where
noted, all were painted during a "bridge binge" in 1899.
Although there are thousands of exquisite gardens, both public and private, all over the world, few can compare to Monet's Giverny. In terms of photography, I doubt you could take a "bad" picture of the place (excluding poor photography). Literally everywhere you turn you want to snap away, or even set up an easel. Monet was not much into photography (such as it was around the turn of the century) so it would appear he did just that, painting everything he saw with the assured knowledge that the following day it would look a little different or fade away. Paintings, once dry, change little. Gardens such as Giverny are living works of art, and as such, Monet seems to have cared as much, or more, for his highly individual creation as for the paintings derived from its colorful content.
Copyright, Jim Lane
This panorama photo was "knitted" together from three separate
shots. It depicts the main path from Monet's front door looking
toward the river. As you can tell from one of his paintings (below),
done late in his life as his eyesight failed, the graveled path looks
nothing like what did when Monet painted it.
Path Under the Rose Trellis--Giverny, 1920-22, Claude Monet
Copyright, Jim Lane
Monet's Japanese garden in the rain.
Although I endured a rainy drizzle while visiting Giverny's picturesque Japanese Garden (and would have gotten soaked in a downpour while waiting in line to get into Monet's home, had it not been for a kind lady who shared her umbrella), I was fortunate enough to capture photos of Giverny in two distinctly different lights. All of these photos were taken only hours apart (sometimes only minutes apart) as the sky and clouds changed rapidly from rain to shining sunlight (weather along the Siene is like that in the spring).
Copyright, Jim Lane
Narrow garden paths among the ever-changing floral plantings
constitute one of the most endearing features of Monet's
gardening tastes. His home is in the background.
Opinions differ as to which time of the year Giverny is most beautiful. I was there in May, 2015. Tulips and dozens of other flowers (see below) were in brilliant bloom. Photos I've seen taken in the summer appear to be shadier and have a somewhat more plentiful array of colors. Judging from some of the snow scenes Monet painted in the area, I would not recommend Giverny during the winter months (actually it's closed then and for seven months of the year).
Copyright, Jim Lane
Spring:  Irises, peonies, rhododendrons,
poppies, geraniums, wisterias, azaleas,
wallflowers, Tulips, laburnum, daisies,
and delphiniums.
Summer: Roses, nasturtiums, ageratums,
zinnias, nicotianas, busy lizzies, verbenas,
dahlias, rudbeckias, salvias, primulinus
gladiolus, cleomes, cosmos, sunflowers,
helianthus, hollyhocks and the beginning of
water lilies.
Autumn: All the annuals listed above
except for water lilies which fade in

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