Richard Ford was born on the 21 April 1796. He travelled extensively on the Continent between the years 1815 and 1819, making a Grand Tour of Italy in 1817-18.
In 1839 Ford took up drawing again when the prospect of making a tour of Italy presented itself. Ford was inspired by John Gebdall who assisted him with his drawing lessons.
Ford brought back from his tour a number of sketches of highly picturesque views of Rome, Amalfi and Messina, many of which are of romantic character. On Ford's return to England he wrote that he had been going through his sketches
"Which then will be put into a huge book, and it is wonderful, as in the case of Spain, how they carry you back to scenes long forgotten and awake up a million events hived in the brain, which like dew drops on the bough only fall when touched."
Ford's watercolours show that he was influenced by the work of the greatest of all English landscape painters, J.M.W. Turner, R.A. Ford owned several watercolours by Turner, which Ruskin chided him for neglecting, and he visited Turner's studio on more than one occasion.
It is evident that Ford was striving after Turneresque effects
For further information on Richard Ford see Walpole Society, Vol 60, 1998 in 2 parts, p 23.