A portrait of Sir Patrick Blake MP standing by his hunter in a landscape

A portrait of Sir Patrick Blake MP standing by his hunter in a landscape



George Carter was baptised in Colchester on 10 April, 1737. His first career was as a shop assistant but is reported to have been an awful salesman and soon turned to painting in order to earn his living. After many years of operating as a self-taught artist, Carter formally entered the Royal Academy schools in 1770.

He exhibited with the Society of Artists of Great Britain from 1769 to 1774. Some of the twenty- two paintings which he exhibited at the Society include: "A sailor saved from a shipwreck", "A boy and an ass", "Cephalis and Procris", "A portrait of a gentleman in his study", and "A portrait of a gentleman with his horse. Carter also exhibited sixteen paintings at the Royal Academy.

It was while exhibiting with the Society of Artists that he met the great American-born portrait and historical scene painter John Singleton Copley. The two artists became friends and travelled to Paris and Rome together in order to enrich their work through the study of antiquities. Copley returned to London in 1775 and Carter continued his studies in Gibraltar and St. Petersburg. While it seems that Copley and Carter lost touch at this point, Copley always remained an influence in Carter's painting.

Upon his return to London in 1783, Carter put together a large show of his work. The private exhibition was held in 1785 and included thirty-five historical scenes including "Siege of Gibraltar" and "The Death of Captain Cook."

Not yet having satiated his urge to travel, Carter journeyed to India and lived in Calcutta from 1786 to 1788. He continued to paint Indian historical scenes after he returned to London and retired to Hendon. Carter was buried in Hendon on 19th September, 1794.


Height 71.12 cm / 28 "
Width 91.44 cm / 36 "

1737 - 1794


Oil on canvas




signed and dated 1773