Celebrate Earth Day with a Pre-Raphaelite Flair

What do the Pre-Raphaelites have to do with our modern Earth Day? Nothing, really. But I think that the principles they followed and the love of nature they embraced can inspire us to slow down and appreciate natural beauty. Prior to the Pre-Raphaelites, if an artist painted a flower in a picture it would have been highly stylized. But the Pre-Raphaelites, who tried to adhere to the maxim “truth to nature”, painted flowers and plants with botanical precision. All natural elements were painted with breathtaking and painstaking detail. Perhaps we should  take the time to notice with a Pre-Raphaelite eye the beauty that exists naturally in our world, to cultivate it and care for it in a way that fits nicely into your life and cliche it may be, but take time to smell the roses.  Appreciate our planet!

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  • sphinxvictorian

    I absolutely agree! I just came back from a lovely walk through our neighborhood, looking at everyone’s beautiful flowers and trees. I don’t know the names of plants, but there is this beautiful flowering bush, with reddish leaves and deep coral blossoms (that start out with buds that look like berries) and I am absolutely in love with them! Also there are daffodils and tulips everywhere! A really glorious Earth Day here in Vermont!

  • Kate

    i live in a beautiful village in Cornwall, England as I walk around it with my dogs I feel we have lost so much of what life is about. The simple pleasures, bird song, spring bursting out, the sound of a running stream, all of nature can be lost while we rush around our busy lives. Before anyone thinks ‘lucky you’ I spent 50 years of my life living & working in cities, I have made the choice to leave that and live a simpler – if poorer life. My advice – try it if you can – you won’t regret it.

  • sphinxvictorian

    I totally agree, Kate. We live in a small but beautiful town in Vermont, our house has wooded trails either side of our little valley, and it really makes me happy that, having recently lost 100 pounds (through surgery) I am able to get out and truly enjoy nature again. It is the newest joy of my life, I have to say.

  • Stephanie Piña

    Thank you for your comments! I enjoyed both of your descriptions of the nature in your respective areas. I think life is so much more enjoyable when we embrace a simpler way of life. I feel like our sense of beauty is slipping away. True beauty, I mean, not what society has conditioned us to view as beautiful.
    And 100 pounds! Congratulations! I’m so happy for you!

  • sphinxvictorian

    Thank you, Stephanie! It’s a new way of life, seriously!

    I do think you’re right, too, about our sense of beauty, at least in Western society, does seem to be slipping away. Although there are still sparks of it, you just have to look closely! 😉 Having been walking an hour a day for some months now, even when it was cold and a bit snowy, it’s been a real revelation discovering our neighborhood, and seeing it change with the seasons. I grew up in Southern California – beautiful in its own way, of course, but no real seasons to speak of. So the changing of the seasons gives such a rhythm to one’s life, I’ve realized.

  • julie

    I am so glad I found you. Have been PRB mad since ‘o’ levels 30 years ago and with the www can really get into their world. Great sisterhood website which helps with my continuing studies into british womens social history along with art and literature.
    I appreciate the way that PRB girls went against victorian convention and did their own thing. That was totally revolutionary for the day.

    again thankyou sisterhood

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