Henri Rousseau (French, b. 1844-1910) worked as a toll collector, painting as a hobby until retirement. He painted in a flat, primitive style that invited much ridicule during his lifetime; his work was seen as unserious. The younger Pablo Picasso was one of the first people to recognize Rousseau's talent, when he found one his canvases on sale as a surface to be painted over, and then went to meet him.
Today even small children recognize the beauty and narrative power of his dream-like images:
Here is Rousseau's description of this painting:
"A wandering Negress, a mandolin player, lies with her jar beside her (a vase with drinking water), overcome by fatigue in a deep sleep. A lion chances to pass by, picks up her scent yet does not devour her. There is a moonlight effect, very poetic."