Bird’s eye view

This drawing shows the view from Van Gogh’s studio window on the first floor of his house on the Schenkweg in The Hague. From a panoramic bird’s eye view, the laundry and carpenter’s workshop behind it are rendered in detail. Women hang the washing out to dry and carpenters are working is the yard. A blossoming tree stands in a border in the foreground on the left.

Perspective frame

Van Gogh had a perspective frame made during this period. This is a wooden or cardboard frame with a pattern of horizontal, vertical and sometimes diagonal threads inside it. He traces the pattern of the threads onto paper or canvas. Then he places the perspective frame in front of the scene he wants to draw or paint in order to transfer the correct proportions.


The traces of the grid of lines can still be seen in Carpenter’s yard and laundry. The drawing is rendered in pencil, chalk and ink and brightened with white accents in watercolour on the washing, the clothes of the washerwomen, the wood in the carpenter’s yard and the blossom on the tree.