Monet was the leading figure of the impressionist movement, a crazy new way of using paint on canvas to capture the moment, spontaneity, changing light. They worked quickly and created new techniques.
Obsessed with recording the sensations he experienced as the seasons and weather changed, Monet experimented with brushstroke and paint application.
Critical to Monet’s creative process were his acute powers of observation and his ability to capture in paint what he saw. One painting of a beach scene with two tiny figures in the corner and huge crashing waves has grains of sand in the layers of paint. The rush of exhilaration as the waves broke, the sand being blown in the wind, immortalised in his work.
Even as his eyesight failed and the cataracts that covered Monet’s eyes, changed the way he saw and then reproduced colour, he couldn’t help himself. He had to paint.
‘Everyday I discover more and more beautiful things. It’s enough to drive one mad. I have such a desire to do everything, my head is bursting with it.’
Claude Monet 1840-1926
Retain the first impression, which is the good one.
Eugene Boudin, Monet’s mentor.