Fussell studied at St Martin's School of Art 1946-9 and the Royal College of Art 1949-52. Like the majority of paintings from this period, the present work is an image of the sea, though oblique and evocative in intent rather than figurative. He painstakingly builds up layer upon layer of highly absorbent tissue paper soaked in paint before manipulating it on the canvas. The thirteen vertical lines can be seen as the reflections of the sun and sky in the water. Fussell is concerned with the relationship between sea and sky, water and air and above all the play of light, which he describes as 'perhaps the true subject of all my work' (correspondence with the artist, 26 March 1962).