James Seymour was born in London, the son of an amateur artist, banker and art dealer. Through his father’s membership of the Virtuosi Club of St Luke, Seymour met leading artists of the day including John Wootton, and gradually taught himself drawing and painting. Seymour’s passion for racing was not limited to art: he was a gambler and may have owned racehorses (indeed he is thought to have bankrupted his father through his ventures!). Now considered one of the three founders of the sporting school, along with John Wootton and Peter Tillemans, Seymour was a prolific producer of sporting art, which was his only subject, for an international market in Europe and America. Sir William Jolliffe, an MP and keen huntsman with estates in Yorkshire, Surrey and Essex, was one of his most important patrons. An ink drawing at the Leeds City Art Gallery is a study for this subject.