In his 'Eléments de perspective' of 1800, Michallon's teacher Pierre-Henri de Valenciennes advised his students to make oil sketches of beautiful trees.
In this sketch Michallon has depicted an ancient tree trunk. The bark is composed of countless quick strokes of colour that suggest its rough texture, while its gnarled branches twist and curl dramatically.
On the reverse of the sheet is a painting of a farmhouse set against a row of trees with a cloud-filled sky above.
The National Gallery has endeavoured to make as many images of the collection as possible available for non-commercial use. However, an image of this painting is not available to download. This may be due to third party copyright restrictions.
If you require a license for commercial use of this image, please use the National Gallery Company's Online Picture Library or contact them using the following: