A 1905 painting of the Cheshire Hunt setting off from Combermere Abbey has been recreated on camera, 115 years later.
Amelia Hart, of Something From the Hart Photography, was asked by the abbey’s owners Sarah Callander Beckett and her husband Peter to try to re-stage the GD Giles picture this season.
“I’d never been asked to do anything like that but it sounded a really exciting opportunity,” Amelia told H&H. “The first challenge, we thought, was the weather as it was torrential rain – but actually that worked really well as it was a similar light to that in the painting. So for once, the rain definitely worked in our favour.”
Amelia said it was also a challenge to position herself to get the same perspective as the artist, which was hard as the trees and landscape have changed in the last century. She also only had once chance; the Cheshire was meeting there only on 20 February and once they had moved off, that was it.
“There was one opportunity to get the picture before they went off on the trail, and we got it,” she said. “I think it worked well, and the owners said they loved it.”
Mrs Beckett said she and her husband came up with the idea to mark his presidency of the Tarporley Hunt Club, and to celebrate the completed 25-year restoration of the abbey.
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She explained that the trees now visible on the left were scrub in the early 20th century; a wood planted to mark the two-year residence of the Austrian empress in the abbey.
“We took the opportunity to recreate the essence of the painting,” she told H&H. “And it celebrates the fact communities still participate in rural activities across the land, and support each other.”
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