A regular visitor to the Channel Islands, Alfred Herbert (1820-1861) was apprenticed as a shipwright but turned to marine and coastal landscape painting in his twenties. He was born in Southend, the son of a Thames waterman.
He exhibited a number of works at the Society of British Artists from 1844 and the Royal Academy between 1847 and 1860. He travelled in England, Holland and France and also to Jersey and Guernsey.
Though he was entirely self-taught, his works displayed remarkable vigour and genius, but they failed to meet with general appreciation, and he could only dispose of them to the dealers at extremely low prices. He died suddenly at the beginning of 1861, leaving a widow and seven children in distressed circumstances.
He is not to be confused with the industrialist Sir Alfred Herbert who founded Coventry's Herbert Art Gallery.