Henry Somm is best known for his drawings and above all for his cartoons with satirical comments that were published in newspapers and magazines. He made illustrations for several novels and collaborated at the Chat noir, La chronique parisienne, High-Life and Frou-Frou. He exhibited in various Impressionist exhibitions in the 1870s and 1880s.
Somm was also a talented watercolour painter. He usually depicted young women, seen crossing streets, walking alone on the Grands Boulevards of Paris, near the Moulin Rouge or at the Exposition Universelle. His watercolours established the myth of the elegant and confident Parisian woman of 1900. Somm perfectly mastered this medium. His watercolours are original by their washed colors and by the certain liberty with which he framed his compositions.