I recently saw this posted on a Lori McNee’s Google+ page – last year Julian Beecroft traveled across Canada to visit the landscapes that inspired the paintings of The Group of Seven. He spent three months traveling from Nova Scotia to British Columbia, and he documented the entire trip.
You can start following his trip here. It really is fascinating, and such a clever idea. The photos of the Canadian landscape on the blog show that these painters truly had a great source of inspiration.
I love when he finds the exact location of a painting, and puts the photo and painting side by side, as he does here with J.E.H. MacDonald’s Waterfall Near Lake O’Hara, 1929. I find it really inspiring to see the colors in the painting and how they differ from the actual landscape. This is something I’d love to work on – capturing the mood and life of a landscape without mimicking the details.
In 1997 my husband and I took a trip across Canada by train. The plan was to fly to Vancouver and catch the train east to Halifax. Unfortunately our first flight was cancelled, and we missed the train. We ended up flying the red eye to Edmonton and catching about four hours of sleep in an airport motel, before taking a taxi in to town to catch the train. I was already furious that we’d missed the ride from Vancouver into the Rockies, so we took a train west to Jasper, then eventually caught our train to continue east.
The trip was fantastic. Even the long slog across the prairies was wonderful…I could sit and stare at fields and grain silos for weeks. So this trip of Julian’s brings up a bit of nostalgia for me.