John Wilson Carmichael was born on January 9th 1800 in Newcastle, England. He was the son of a ship's carpenter and was apprenticed to a ship builder and may have gone to sea. It is hardly surprising therefore that ships became his prime interest.
He may have been a pupil of the landscape artist Thomas Miles Richardson senior, who was a friend and had a studio adjoining Carmichael's in Blackett Street, Newcastle where he set up in 1823.
He exhibited at the Royal Academy from 1835 - 1859 and at the British Institution from 1846 - 1862. His exhibits there for the year 1847 give a London address, so he had obviously moved there from Newcastle. In 1855 the Illustrated London News employed him as their artist in the field in the Baltic theatre of the Crimean War and the journal of his trip still survives.
The death of his son in 1862 affected him so deeply that he never exhibited again. He retired to Scarborough where he gave up painting in 1865 and died on May 2nd 1868. On the centenary of his death there was an exhibition at the Laing Art Gallery in Newcastle.
This information was obtained from the "Dictionary of Sea Painters" by E H H Archibald. The only picture I have ever seen is one of Lincoln Cathedral seen from Brayford Pool in England. If anyone has any further information or knows where I can find his artwork, please let me know.