Turner captured the scale and majesty of the gun ship in this small sketch. The floating buoy in the left foreground and the human activity at the right provide spatial markers which lead the eye into the picture. Turner's skill with the pencil achieves just the right balance of description and suggestion. Ships and shipping continued to fascinate him and he never tired of them as subject matter for his work. This is one of four drawings Turner made in 1827 while at East Cowes on the Isle of Wight. His signature at the bottom of each suggests they were made to present to a prospective patron.

Glossary Open


The support given to artists by an individual or organisation, usually through buying or funding their work.



  • Acc. No. D NG 852
  • Medium Pencil on paper
  • Size 16.10 x 22.60 cm
  • Credit Henry Vaughan Bequest 1900