Looking Away / For the Birds

8 x 10 print comprised of two 8 x 5-inch  images

Printed with archival inks on

100% cotton rag photo paper


Sunflowers are so ubiquitous in Tuscany’s summer landscape, yet I never have the chance to stop and walk among them (since I am usually traveling by bus). I put in a request with my father one July day as he was driving us to the station to catch the train back to Florence. While he read in the car, my mother, my daughter and I set out for the nearest sunflower field.

It was surprisingly difficult to access the sunflowers—they were surrounded by an overgrown ditch—but we finally found a way in. I was a little disappointed to see how many sunflowers had already perished in the heat; I was hoping to spend some time photographing them. As I wandered among the swaying heads, trying to stay clear of the bees, I had a chance to notice how striking the sturdily structured backs of the sunflowers were now that the blooms had all ‘frozen’ vertically in place. Likewise, the drying seed heads possessed a beauty of their own, and I became engrossed in capturing the masses of laden disks.

I don’t know how long it would have taken to satisfy my curiosity for those sunflowers, but at one point I saw my father wandering along the road looking for us . . . we hadn’t realized how much time had gone by. It was thrilling to discover just how interesting a half-dead sunflower field could be. I’m already looking forward to walking in their midst again next July. For now, I am enjoying these reminders of summer; how quickly it passes . . .

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21 - Looking Away / For the Birds - 8 x 10 Print

The photos are printed on 100% cotton museum-quality paper, bringing out details like the velvety petals & tightly packed seed heads. Each image is just under 8 x 5 inches (20.3 x 12.7 cm) and fades gently at the edges; they are separated slightly, and together measure 8 x 10 inches (20.3 x 25.4 cm). There is also a narrow border left at the edge of the paper to allow more flexibility with framing. The print is titled & signed on the back, and packaged in a clear archival sleeve. (Click on the image for a larger view; please note that the images you see on the site are saved at a low resolution for the web, but they are of course printed at high resolution.)

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