|Ambrose Garneray went to sea at an early age, serving on privateers and navy vessels during the Napoleonic Wars. In 1806, he was taken prisoner by the British and interned on a hulk in Portsmouth Harbor for the next eight years. During that time, he developed his artistic skills by painting portraits of his captors in exchange for special privileges. So successful was he that by the end of the war he had established reputation as a marine artist among the leading print seller and dealers in London. Garneray lived in port of Le Havre, which partially explains his interest in whaling and the exceptional quality of his whaling pictures, the artfulness, imagination, and variety of which are without parallel.