A contemporary of Juan Sánchez Cotán, Blas de Ledesma is one of the earliest exponents of Spanish still-life painting and an important influence on still-life artists such as Juan van der Hamen y Léand Pedro de Camprobin.
Blas de Ledesma worked in Granada between 1602 and 1614, where he specialised in decorative painting and designed a vault for the room of the Moracabes of the Alhambra. The austere simplicity and the emphasis on the central axis in Ledesma's compositions possibly influenced the approach to the genre adopted by Juan Sánchez Cotán and by Francisco Zurbarán later in the century. He often reused motifs in his works; the cut watermelon in the lower left of the second painting can be also seen in a still- life in a private collection (see R. Torres Martin, op. cit., p. 178, no. 70).