Skip to main content

Peter Paul Rubens, A Shepherd with his Flock in a Woody Landscape

Key facts
Full title A Shepherd with his Flock in a Woody Landscape
Artist Peter Paul Rubens
Artist dates 1577 - 1640
Date made probably 1615-22
Medium and support Oil on oak
Dimensions 64.3 × 94.3 cm
Acquisition credit Presented by Rosalind, Countess of Carlisle, 1913
Inventory number NG2924
Location Not on display
Collection Main Collection
A Shepherd with his Flock in a Woody Landscape
Peter Paul Rubens

We look down from a height on a rocky outcrop of ground surrounded by trees, their reflection caught in the tranquil stream drifting past. The woods are dark and dense but unthreatening. There’s a pathway through the undergrowth towards the light.

A shepherd leans on his crook, his flock beside him. Although the sun shines brightest on the sheep, it’s the glowing red of the boy’s jacket in the shadow that serves to brighten the whole picture, and which catches the eye first.

Rubens’s love of the natural world is shown in the meticulous, realistic detail with which he has painted the various textures – rocks and pebbles, shaggy wool, stringy blades of grass, water and myriad kinds of leaf. Many of his exquisite drawings still exist in the museums and galleries of the world, revealing to us his fascination and understanding of nature.

Download image
Download low-resolution image

Download a low-resolution copy of this image for personal use.

License this image

License and download a high-resolution image for reproductions up to A3 size from the National Gallery Picture Library.

License image
Download low-resolution image

This image is licensed for non-commercial use under a Creative Commons agreement.

Examples of non-commercial use are:

  • Research, private study, or for internal circulation within an educational organisation (such as a school, college or university)
  • Non-profit publications, personal websites, blogs, and social media

The image file is 800 pixels on the longest side.

As a charity, we depend upon the generosity of individuals to ensure the collection continues to engage and inspire. Help keep us free by making a donation today.

Download low-resolution image

You must agree to the Creative Commons terms and conditions to download this image.

Creative Commons Logo