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Thursday, July 30, 2015

Dancing in the Wheat Fields...Impressions of France part 6

'Dancing at the Edge'               8x10               pastel            ©Karen Margulis
 I wasn't really expecting wheat fields. I was hoping for poppies and flax and maybe even some canola fields. In the end the wheat fields won me over. Our home in Meuvaines France was right in the middle of rolling wheat fields that seemed to go on for miles.   Stepping outside the manor you could choose any direction and within a few steps you would be in the midst of the magic.

How can wheat be magical? Individually they are as interesting as any flower. But there is more to it as I discovered on my daily walk through these fields.

See for yourself. Have a look at this short video clip taken on one of my evening walks. Listen to the wind and watch the wheat dance.

It wasn't just the wheat that was magical. It was the setting and the light. Every time I set off down the dirt road leading up through the fields it was different. The light was special. Sometimes the wheat seemed to glow with the evening sun. It is interesting to note that the magic hour in June lasted for hours. The best light was in the evening after dinner. The best time for an evening walk was around 8:00pm. The sun didn't set until around 10:00! Our evening walks became something I looked forward to. 

Just outside our door

This is a tree with character!

Walking up the gentle hill we would pass a large area of Queen Anne's Lace dancing at the edge of the wheat. (the subject of today's painting) Then we passed a lone tree, a sentinel on the way to the top. I took many photos of this very interesting tree.

At the top of the hill the dirt road intersected with a paved road. Within a mile this road would take you to the beach. The view from the top was unexpected and breathtaking. Perched above the village and our cows we could see for miles. In the distance the sea beckoned. It was amazing!

The sea in the distance

Of course, being in the middle of this magic inspired us to paint the wheat fields. I set up at the edge of the field to paint several studies. This experience only clarified the experience. I was officially in love with wheat!

I did discover a few lingering poppies. My poppy fields would come later in my journey.

Painting notes: Today's painting is on Uart 400 with an alcohol wash underpainting. 



I am enjoying every moment of your European travels and know you will continue with much more. I wish I loved plein air painting as you do. I am saving my money for a trip to Italy.

robertsloan2art said...

Wow! You outdid yourself. My favorite of your Queen Anne's Lace paintings. The flatness of the flower heads and their dancing angles, that sense of a breeze, the whole painting, thh violet flowers in their shade, it's all wonderful. Love the photos too. it's very different to me. I'm used to corn fields and other crops, wheat has a very different look with that shimmering pale gold. So cool! Thanks for a great article!