Like his friend Monet, Renoir considered nature as his main studio and open air painting as the touchstone of Impressionism. Throughout his life, he painted splendid landscapes, as he found in this genre a very special enjoyment and freedom of inspiration. The majority of these views were not meant to be exhibited and were not commissioned. The artist’s sole ambition was to seize the dazzling beauty of the light, the moving mass of vegetation tinted with all the shades of his palette, the velvety horizons and pearly skies. He wished to convey in his paintings the most immaterial atmospheric feelings, to depict the beauty of the air, and nothing else.
The Impressionist technique consisting in covering the canvas with quick touches of colour suited him particularly well for painting landscapes in the open air and rendering the fleeting impressions of atmospheric phenomena. Renoir used very diluted colours, which he called “juices”, in order to represent the scenery in its large masses, sombre and bright, and willingly ignoring all descriptive details. That thin and fluid coat which left partly visible the white primer constituted the base on which the artist worked by applying brighter touches of colour. “Gradually, patches of pink or blue, then sienna, were mixed in a perfect balance”, wrote Jean Renoir in Souvenirs, his memories of his father.