A Rainy day in Spring depicts an opening in a peaceful, understated forest. Marco Calderini creates a moody, yet interesting, rhythm in this painting that moves the eye from foreground to background, from left to right. He accomplishes this movement across the canvas using vertical and horizontal compositional strategies to balance light and darkness. The glossy stream meanders down the middle of the canvas, helping the eye to move up toward the curling clouds. Three light-colored birch trees frame the abundance of lush greenery and help illuminate the shadowy atmosphere of the forest.
Calderini believed that a direct experience of a scene was critical to successfully capturing it, and therefore he would not paint a landscape unless he had spent several months in the area. Though he painted Italian landscapes rather than French, Calderini’s approach to painting nature had much in common with the Barbizon painters.