Ebb Tide

Reference URL

Ebb Tide Dated 1882
  • Scottish Art
Fettes Douglas first began to paint watercolours late in his career, when serious ill-health prevented him from working on large oil paintings. His watercolours feature a restrained palette of greys and browns, and rely on simple, subdued compositions. Fettes Douglas visited Holland and Belgium in 1878, and was greatly influenced by the atmospheric works of The Hague School. Their use of low-key colours and sombre tones to depict flat, panoramic landscapes, is evident in this atmospheric watercolour. The distant breaking waves of the sea can just be seen on the far right of the picture, a reminder that the enormous swathe of exposed sand is momentary: the sea will return and cover it again.

Glossary Open


The arrangement of different elements in a work of art.

Hague school

A group of Dutch painters working in The Hague in the second half of the 19th century, painting in subdued colours to convey the atmosphere and impression of moment in their works.


A hand-held board on which a painter lays out and mixes the colours he or she is using. By extension it is used to describe the range of colours employed by an artist.


A paint with colouring and binding agents diluted with water. It has a transparent quality and is usually applied to paper.

Composition, Hague school, Palette , Watercolour


  • Acc. No. D NG 971
  • Medium Watercolour on paper
  • Size 16.50 x 35.80 cm
  • Credit Purchased 1909