In 1828 Blechen travelled to Italy where the southern landscape with its particular colours and light inspired him to a whole number of paintings. He rode through the valley near Amalfi on a donkey, tirelessly sketching and drawing. Two years later, after his return to Berlin, he painted this mountain landscape. Bright light pours into the valley. A group of woodcutters are felling trees for the paper mill, seen with smoke ascending from its chimney. By the strength of the verticals in this picture and the striking contrasts of light and dark, Blechen lends a dramatic air to this extremely picturesque piece.