Birth Date: 1870
Death Date: 1940
Chappell was born in Doyle Street, Goole and was educated at Goole Grammar school. He showed an early talent as an artist, specialising in local maritime scenes. As a young man, he was apprenticed to Harrison, a Goole photographer. By 1890, he had opened his own studio and was advertising as a photographer and artist. Chappell gained local success as a painter of ships for sailors - international recognition came later. Vessels entering the port of Goole brought most of his clients and as soon as a painting had been commissioned, the ship would be sketched on the spot. Chappell would then return to his studio to finish the work in oils or watercolours. His work had to be accurate in order to satisfy the expert knowledge of his clients and the paintings had to be completed quickly before the ship sailed again. Always modestly priced, more than 12,000 paintings are known to have been undertaken by Chappell, but comparatively few survive. Paintings of foreign vessels were frequently taken home by the crews and works by Chappell may now be found in many European museums. In 1904, Chappell and his family moved to Par in Cornwall. He continued to paint prolifically until the early 1930's.