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This painting is one of a number of small, vibrant sketches Cals made in the 1850s. He began painting outdoors, ‘sur le motif’, at the seaports of Honfleur, Le Havre and Dieppe, settling in Honfleur after the Franco-Prussian war. He became friendly with the innovative painter Jongkind, who was to introduce Cals to Courbet, Boudin and Monet, becoming part of the group of artists who worked on the Normandy coast at this time. Cals was later to exhibit with the Impressionists between 1874 and 1879.