Annibale Carracci again makes use of mythological tales as inspiration for his work, with this large oil painting considered one of his very best. The Baroque style of drama and bright colour is alive and well, just as it is in most of his other works in this medium. There is a clear separation in this composition between cupid and venus on the left hand side, comforting each other, whilst the controversial figure of Adonis sits on the right.
Besides these three figures there is lots of other detail in this painting, making the overall composition particularly busy. A small dog stands besides Adonis, whilst the background features a plethora of trees and plants, with a small opening in the top right hand corner which allows a small landscape view to be added. The viewer will focus first on the key figures before later appreciating the other elements added by Carracci.
Annibale Carracci would use tones and colours particularly subtly for the Baroque period, when others were particularly bolder in approach. This would be appreciated by some but not others, depending on one's readiness for the newer styles that were starting to develop across Europe. He was considered a more classical artist when compared to the energy and emotion of fellow-Italian artist Caravaggio, for example. The movement was broad enough to allow room for both of these great portrait painters.