Friday, September 2, 2011

Tree Shadows

To state the obvious, there is something totally magical in the way light can affect the appearance of an object, this being made full use of in the theatre as well as in paintings. Nowhere is this transformation more striking than among trees, when the sun is going in and out of the clouds: one moment you see a simple, statuesque tree, the next a column decorated with wondrous patterns and shapes. Here I am going to show some that I have seen over the last few months in the UK, where this Summer the shadows have been rare because of a lack of sunshine!

As any of my followers will by now know, I am particularly fond of Conker (Horse Chestnut) trees, so am starting with the shadows of their leaves on trees in Ilford's Valentines Park- I find them reminiscent of Japanese paintings:

Whereas on the Conker tree the shadows were of the tree's own leaves, this next tree is decorated with those of a neighbouring Privet hedge:

Next are the paler, more delicate Oak leaf patterns on an Oak tree trunk:

And here are more Oak leaf shadows, mixing with the bark's texture on a very gnarled old tree:

Here the shadows of this Plane tree spread down its trunk onto the grass:

And now for the Impressionistic effect on a Copper Beech:

Here beside the River Leam in Leamington Spa, is a watery-shadowed Weeping Willow tree:

And back in Ilford's Valentines Park, the bold shapes on this wonderfully sculptural Deodar:

To conclude, I will show you the shadows made by four Lime trees in Valentines Park:

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