Weissenbruch, born in The Hague in 1824, was very much stimulated by the artistic milieu in which he grew up. As a child, his only aspiration was to become a painter. At the age of sixteen Weissenbruch's professional carreer began as he started taking drawing lessons with J.J. Löw. He would later attend evening classes at the Academy in The Hague under tutelage of Bartholomeus Johannes van Hove (1790-1880). Choosing the landscape around The Hague as his primary motive under the influence of Andreas Schelfhout (1787-1870), his work soon lost its Romantic characteristics and Weissenbruch started to look for his own style.
The landscape near The Hague in which he worked was filled with waterways and lakes, the beach of Scheveningen, weather-beaten houses, windmills and willows, with high, wide skies above. The artist was particularly fascinated with the permanently changing skies. He found it an essential part of a work of art: De lucht is de hoofdzaak in een schilderij. Als je lucht niet goed is, dan deugt je schilderij niet. De lucht beheerscht het heele landschap! (see: Hans Janssen and Wim van Sinderen, De Haagse School, Rotterdam 1997, p. 46).
The present watercolour is a large and beautiful example of Weissenbruch's later and more mature painterly style. The low horizon leaves plenty of room for an extensive sky with marvellous silky clouds. Weissenbruch's spontaneous approach to his subject allowed for a representation of the moment, also described as l'instantanéité (Edwin Jacobs a.o., JH Weissenbruch (1824-1903), Zwolle 1999, p. 46). A thorough understanding of his medium combined with an element of spontaneity has lead to a wide and very subtle range of colours throughout this attractive composition.