Callot's life and work are documented by his extensive drawings and engravings. After perfecting his skills in Rome with the publisher Philippe Thomassin, he worked at the court of Cosimo II de' Medici in Florence from 1612 until returning to his home in Nancy in 1621. There he entered the service of Duke Charles IV of Lorraine. Like Bellange, who is frequently named as his pupil, Callot was primarily active as a court artist, but had entirely different interests as well. With great imagination, he rendered in graphics and drawings what was happening around him: life at court and among the populace, the theatre, festivals and later - after his return to Nancy - depictions of battlefields and, finally, endless numbers of religious subjects. In all these events, narrated with spontaneous vitality, Callot created a reflection of his time. The technique of printmaking, preceded by careful drawings, provided him with an ideal medium. Thanks to his own disposition and personal engagement, Callot developed an expressive style that broke with Mannerism and instead worked with naturalistic forms. In his detailed, mostly small-format illustrations - which could have extremely complex compositions - he worked with harmonious proportions and a clear structure. With these qualities Callot showed the way to the future and was of greater importance to subsequent artists (Rembrandt, for example) than Bellange, who brought to perfection a courtly, mannered art that had no following.