John Banting began his artistic career while working as a clerk. He attended life drawing classes at the Vincent Square Art School and later established his own studio in Fitzroy Street, associating himself with the Bloomsbury Group. Banting was passionate about the Surrealist movement and employed popular techniques for his exhibition in 1931 at the Wertheim Gallery. He produced both commercial and the decorative works at the same time as writing and illustrating his satirical ‘A Blue Book of Conversation’. Banting’s career took off with solo exhibitions, however after he was declared unfit for active service the artist was only just saved from extreme poverty by a grant from the Artists Benevolent Fund, and moved in with his friend Edward Burra, producing few paintings in his last years and devoting the majority of his time to his writing instead.