John West Giles was a sporting painter and lithographer who exhibited between 1830 and 1865. His subjects include sporting, animal and decorative subjects, topographical views and military costumes and were made after his owns works or those of contemporary artists. He is thought to be the brother of painter James William Giles, as both artists were living at the same address in Aberdeen in 1830, when they sent works for exhibition at the Royal Academy. John also exhibited five works at the British Institution in London. He appears to have left Aberdeen by 1838 and after this mostly worked in the London area.
"Portrait of a Bull" is a watercolour measuring 9"x 13". It is signed and dated 1844 and is inscribed "Shown at Smithfield 1844". It is mounted into an old maple frame giving an overall size of 17"x 21". A rare and interesting item.