John Wilson Carmichael
English painter, born in Newcastle-upon-Tyne on 9 January 1800. His father was a ship’s carpenter and as a youth he was apprenticed to a shipbuilder. It is possible that he spent a period at sea but he had already established his painting workshop at the age of 23, when he shared premises with the landscape painter Thomas Richardson Senior in Blackett Street, Newcastle. It has been suggested that Richardson may have been his teacher. Carmichael did not remain long in Newcastle but chose to travel throughout Italy. By 1847 he had returned to Britain and set up his studio in London. He was very prolific and a regular exhibitor of marine works at both the Royal Academy (1835–59) and the British Institution (1846–62). He returned to sea to participate officially in the Baltic theatre of the Crimean War in both 1854 and 1855 and much of his work there was published as engravings in the Illustrated London News. The National Maritime Museum, London, has his very large canvas of the 1855 bombardment of the Russian fortress of Sveaborg (now in Finland) and a large pair of pictures of HM Ships Erebus and Terror in the Antarctic and New Zealand during Captain James Clarke Ross’s Southern Ocean expedition of 1839–43. He contributed in image and prose to volumes on marine art but gave up painting and retired to Scarborough, where he died, after the early death of his son.
refer Royal Observatory Greenwich National Maritime Museum