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Thomas Shotter Boys NWS (1803-1874)


Thomas Shotter Boys NWS (1803-1874)

The closest follower of Richard Parkes Bonington, Thomas Shotter Boys worked with equal success as a watercolourist and printmaker. His chromolithographs of European cities proved especially innovative and popular.

Thomas Shotter Boys was born in Pentonville, London, on 2 January 1803, the son of a salesman. He was apprenticed to the engraver, George Cooke, between 1817 and 1823, and his training in printmaking had an influence on the development of his lucid style of watercolour. Though exhibiting at the Society of British Artists from 1824 (until 1858), he moved to Paris, where he met Richard Parkes Bonington, as well as the Fielding brothers and William Callow.

As Bonington’s friend and protégé, Boys entered an influential artistic circle that included the painter, Eugène Delacroix, and the young writer, Prosper Merimée. While Bonington encouraged him to concentrate on watercolours, so he, in turn, may have given lessons in etching to Bonington and the landscape painter, Paul Huet.

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