Jean-Francois Millet was the most outstanding realist painter in France in 19th Century, who was well known for his realism paintings. His works were created to mainly describe the labor and life of peasants with a rich flavor of rural life. He used an original look to observe the nature and was against the idea that noble paintings should reflect the upper class people. Sower depicted in the desolate cornfield, the sower sowing the seeds of hope. The birds were flying in the air and looking for food, seemingly contesting with the seeds, which showed a magnificent picture of the man and the nature.
The upper citizens were all fluttering about this painting as if they had seen the scene similar to people on the streets of Paris during June Revolution. But the progressives had different reflection responses. The author Hugo saw the praise for the creation power of ordinary people from this picture and fully affirmed it. The literary critic Gotiye said this image was painted by the land sowing the seeds and very real. The painter used a sculpture-like, simple and concise image to briefly express an amazing content. Therefore the Holland painter Vincent Van Gogh said, "Miller’s works showed both the image of reality and symbolic significance."
Millet never painted scenes of the peasants' revolt, perhaps this was due to the presence of religious sentiment in his good-matured humanity. But the image of ordinary people with callous hands and feet and coarse clothes Miller painted was a kind of struggle of voluptuous and debauchery society, although this resistance was relatively mild. That is what Sower wishes to convey.