About 20 miles east of Florence, the landscape is a spectacular 360 degree vista of vineyards, olive orchards, and farms. I saw it first two years ago, and I wanted to see it again.
Finding the Castle
I didn’t see the castle two years ago. I had no idea it even existed. On this visit we took time to have lunch in the lovely restaurant overlooking the spectacular view. It was a conversation with our server that tipped us off.
“Go to the top of the hill and take the switch-back turn and you will be at the castle where they grow all the food we serve here.”
As if the Creator had spoken, we followed instructions and sure enough there she was at the top of the mountain. Standing outside the castle I painted the view, My Side of the Mountain (below.)
See the Tuscany Retreat Paintings>
Back in the studio (in Italy), I continued developing the colors. I felt very attracted to the right side of the painting, and at one point actually folded the painting in half to see how it would look as a vertical.
That did it. I decided I had to explore this half of the painting. And so the second painting in the series began as a vertical composition.
Switching from horizontal to a vertical perspective changed the way everything looked. Yet it was not until I returned to Virginia, that the warm reds and purples took the lead.
Stepping back into my Virginia studio felt like walking into another woman’s life. I suppose that’s when I actually entered the castle. There were cobwebs on everything ~ even the studio entrance!
Paintings on easels from two months prior startled me. Looking better than I recalled, I felt the urge to finish them with my deeper, enriched palette. I am struggling for words to express the differences. Perhaps the paintings speak far more clearly. See more of these paintings>