Activities: Boudin

Detail from Eugène-Louis Boudin (1824–98), The Meuse at Dordrecht, 1882

Detail from Eugène-Louis Boudin, 'The Meuse at Dordrecht' (1882)



Take a moment to look at the painting.

  • What can you see in the fore/middle/background?
  • How would you describe the overall mood/atmosphere of the work? Use visual evidence from the painting to support your response.



Corot influenced Boudin, who in turn influenced Monet. Compare Willows, The Meuse at Dordrecht and Argenteuil Basin with a Single Sailboat according to the following qualities:

  • composition
  • brushstroke
  • treatment of the water
  • depiction of light and shadow



Recreate the effect... Reflections

The reflections of the boats on the water surface look very realistic in The Meuse at Dordrecht. Photograph a number of different water sources- a puddle, river, the sea, rain running down a window etc., noting the difference between still and moving water, splashes and drops. Paint these effects, experimenting with your brush-stroke and the consistency of the paint. Try substituting alternative/recycled materials such as plastic bottles or aluminium foil for the water.

Create your own...Impressionist skyline!

Boudin believed that "everything painted on the spot always has a strength, a power, a vividness of touch that is not to be found again in the studio". Make several quick sketches of the clouds using chalk pastels (white, yellow, red, pink, blue, green) on large sheets of blue or grey sugar paper.