The movie a Little Chaos by Alan Rickman is what I would call an inspiration for beginner photographers. The film follows Kate Winslet as she moves from her successful career as an architect to designing gardens and landscape architecture. She takes on the challenge of restoring France’s famous gardens at King Louis XIV’s Palace of Versailles, which was in danger due to neglect and lack of funds. You’ll find yourself wanting more after watching this flick because there are so many inspiring moments that will make you want to go out and take pictures!
The other night bored by the programmes on TV, I went treasure hunting on Netflix. I was looking for something special without knowing exactly what I was after as mainstream movies are not my type. I seem to have a weakness for period drama at the moment, I fell head over heels for War and Peace the BBC drama, inspired by Tolstoi book which I bought, 1300 pages to read!
Browsing on Netflix I came across a title which attracted my attention: A Little Chaos by Alan Rickman. The movie is based on the story of an 18th century woman who was hired to design gardens and landscapes for Louis XIV, despite not being fully accepted in her field at that time.
Kate Winslet plays the role of Sabine de Barra, she gets hired by André le Nôtre (Matthieu Schoenartz) considered as the greatest landscape architect in France, for Louis XIV king of France to help shape his new garden at Versailles. In this movie we see her working on one of Le Nôtre’s most famous creations-the Bosquet des Rocailles also known as The Bosquet de la Salle du Bal.
The fanciful romance between Le Nôtre and Madame de Barra is all coming out of Alan’s imagination (or his screenplay writers), the story is set in 1682, while Le Nôtre was close to 80 at the time. Under strong influence from Boho Chic inspiration, some of the images could have been featured on a Boho Chic Wedding blog or website; colourful home decor with amazing flowers and dreamy pictures haunted by Sabine’s daughter ghost.
The romance between Le Nôtre and Sabine is like a slow burning candle, small glances at first. But not for long–hands touching as well as notes being passed back and forth during the days when they could find privacy in each other’s company to be with one another in this way. Sabine’s passion is under threat by mischief and the intrigues played at the Court, which does not bode well with her direct and straight forward talking. Le Nôtre’s wife is another vilain to her, even though she was the one to instigate an open marriage.
The photography, the landscape, the garden, the architecture are well thought through, the rythme is keeping a good flow, not getting tangled in a complicated intrigue. We encounter the Princess Palatine married to the Duc d’Orléans, if you want to throw yourself in this period era, her letters will give you a good account of the flow and sprit of the time.
Watch the movie to inspire our creative photographic vision. Plunge into the 17th century, bring a little bit of chaos in your life, something small, something that inspires you to open up your creativity.
- Buy some house plants as a new room decor,
- Lay the dinner table with new Boho Chic dinner ware,
- Buy roses and paint or photograph them.
- Think of something that you would not consider as mainstream, lay some small candles along the pathway in your garden.
- Break the mould, set up the movement and shake it gently.
I encourage you to watch the movie and see what inspires your creativity. Once you’ve seen it, I want to know which of these 17th-century inspirations resonated with you the most–tell me in a comment below. And if none of them did? Well then, please share some other creative inspiration that has helped open up new possibilities for your photography!