English Painter, 1775-1835
He trained at John Boyne's drawing school in Gloucester Street, Bloomsbury, London, and exhibited portraits at the Royal Academy from 1797. Following the success of a portrait of the Russian ambassador, Count Woronzow, he was appointed portrait painter to the Princess of Wales. Thomas Lawrence observed Heaphy's success and bought some of his pictures but had little cause to envy Heaphy's style, which owed much to the vocabulary of civic portraiture popularized by Joshua Reynolds (e.g. Portrait of a Naval Officer; London, V&A). Heaphy's largest project, The Duke of Wellington in Consultation with his Officers Previous to a General Engagement (Newcastle upon Tyne, Laing A.G.), was begun in Spain in 1813 during the Peninsular War and was finished in 1816. The engraving, which was intended to ensure Heaphy's fortune, was not released until 1822, by which time interest in the war had waned. Heaphy failed to finish his Battle of Waterloo (1816; untraced), another panoramic multiple portrait. Heaphy's other speciality, paintings of ports, markets, tradespeople and labourers, brought him great popularity between 1807 and 1811.