The first half of this book is a detailed exploration of Turner's life and background. It begins with his early years in London, where he exhibited paintings in the window of his father's barber shop. Through his travels in Europe, copying and studying the old masters, Turner was largely self-taught until he enrolled at the Royal Academy. In 1796 one of his first oil paintings was hung there, and his success culminated in the opening of his own gallery. The second half of the book is a collection of his original works. These superb reproductions are accompanied by analysis of each painting and its significance regarding Turner's life, the period in which it was executed, his technique and his body of work as a whole. This reference book is essential for anyone who wants to learn more about one of the finest landscape painters in English history.