Friday, 26 July 2013

Artful readers Club - Birdsong by Sebastian Faulks


It is hard to say I enjoyed this book as the trench warfare scenes are harrowing but it was a wonderful read. Beautifully written and totally unforgettable.The book follows the life and loves of Stephen Wraysford from his initial pre- war stay in France to the finding of his diaries some 60 years after the war. For those who may read it I do not want to give the story away but I was almost holding my breath towards the end. The characters, however briefly they appear, are so well described that I felt that I knew them and certainly cared about their fate. I have read stories of the First World war before but after reading this one I really understand why my Grandad would never talk to me about his experiences and why the poppy is such an appropriate emblem for the fallen.
I felt inspired to try and paint my piece this month and used acrylics on canvas. I painted and used a small poppy stamp with the red paint as a layer. I used a stencil through a mask to add the barbed wire and confess this was added through my tears, such was the effect of this book. I added a bird to reflect Stephen's last journey through the trenches and a larger 3D poppy.
I am so glad I finally got around to reading this book.
Jen x





















13 comments:

  1. My mum read and loved this book some time ago and was always trying to persuade me to read it, but I am such a wuss when it comes to sad stories, especially wartime ones, so I have shied away. I really should force myself one day as I'm sure it will be rewarding. Your artwork is beautiful.

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  2. Your canvas works perfectly! It is always a strange effect, looking at a field full of poppies with delight, only to feel a twinge of guilt when we remember the fallen. Beautiful work :D XXX

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  3. I was taken back by the sadness you felt for these characters, especially Wraysford. War has that effect on us, I fear. This is a beautiful review, full of emotion.

    For one of our holidays, our Vets sell poppies. I wrote a piece on my blog honoring Memorial Day about the poem "In Flanders Fields." I was far more impressed with your artwork than mine. You did a fantastic job with the field of poppies as well as the barbed wire. This is a heartfelt piece. and I really enjoyed seeing it come together.

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  4. I read this book a few years ago. It is very powerful and full of passion and I do remember the ending being really uplifting too. I think it is wonderful that a novel could move you to tears. I think your art work for this is superb.The composition and heartfelt beauty of it is deeply moving. Thank you for sharing both review and painting. Julie Ann x

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  5. I love poppies and grow them around my farm for their beauty and so I love your canvas too! ♥
    It must have been a good read if it moved you to tears!

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  6. Jen...that's a moving piece of art even if I didn't know the background. Beautifully done...both the review and your art!

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  7. I'm glad you got round to reading too! I've been recommending it for years, but I did warn you about the tears! ;) A fantastic piece of art though lady... Beautiful. Bxx

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  8. The bright sweet poppies and rough dangerous wire are an excellent symbol of of war. There is suffering, like the suggests, and there are also many wonderful things: friendships stronger than life, courage that we didn't know we have, stories...

    Great book, and even greater artistic expression of the reading experience.

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  9. Beautiful canvas, thanks for the individual steps. i adore poppies and have loads in my garden. The book sounds so moving, i can well imagine that it would make me cry too.

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  10. Wonderful canvas, Jen. An unforgettable book that had a profound effect on me. You have really done it justice.

    Janet xx

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  11. Given the fact that just looking at your beautiful artwork actually brought tears to my eyes, it is clear that I would not be able to read this book, even though your review shows how good it must be. I loved the review, and your image is one of those that has already photographed itself into my brain and I can see it without looking at the screen. Ehat stronger accolade could you have.
    I am sure you have read the WWI poets like Wilfred Owen, which are also so powerful. Thank you for a wonderful review page.

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  12. Everything about this post is beautiful, your review, your thoughts on the book - your canvas.

    I'm not sure I could read the book. I find it hard watching war films etc. But I do love what you created from it.

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  13. Awesome artwork! Love the contrast.

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