The early morning toil of fishermen working the English Channel is shown in this rare early work by mason. In a composition of muted tones and contrasts, the ketch rigged seine boat rides gently on the sea while two dorymen work at setting a purse seine off her port side. A buoy marker has been set and one crewman rows while the other plays out the massive fishing net.
Mason has captured the early morning mists and fog of the channel using a thin transparent wash of blue grey for sea and sky, the hard working character of the fishing vessel and the foreground dory is well portrayed with darker layers heightened with white.
The positioning of the vessels and their relationship to the ocean swell points to mason's obvious familiarity with the way of the sea and his knowledge of the characteristics of ships afloat. The vessels are in fine perspective giving this painting strong realism and a sense of authentic marine atmosphere.
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