Richard explains what he learned investigating Pissarro’s approach to painting orchards:
“Even in the impressionist 1870s, Pissarro adopted an underlying symmetry and calculated composition that hinges upon two motifs that become familiar in his later work, the staged foreground tree with shadow and the pathway. To some extent, I used these elements. As time went on, it seems to me that Pissarro relied less on an impressionism ‘en plein air’ and increasingly on recreating landscape in the studio through memory, to give the work greater self-possession. This made sense to me. Whilst I visited the orchards weekly and monthly during the year, starting quite a few paintings on site and developing a regular route to take in particular spots and viewpoints, my approach evolved to imaginatively combine particular trees, pathways, gates, and buildings in the composition. When taken together, repetitions of three, four or five principal trees create a friezelike arrangement.