Nicolaas Barnouw was a civil servant by profession and also developed into a meritorious painter of landscapes. From 1826 to 1870, he regularly submitted his work for the annual Exhibition of Living Masters. Not much is known about his painting education, but we do know that he was taught by the Rotterdam landscape painter Jacob de Meijer (1798-1884) and that he was an assistant of Christiaan Immerzeel, whose landscapes he sometimes completed. Barnouw stayed in Renkum and Oosterbeek around 1869 -70. He then settled in Overschie, not far from his native soil. It can be concluded from his paintings that Barnouw also traveled; he was in Baden and Bentheim in Germany.