W.P. Wilson was an artist heavily influenced by French caricaturist Jean Ignace Isidore Gerard Grandville. Grandville was born into an artistic and theatrical family in 1803 and received his first artistic instruction from his father, a painter of miniatures. In 1828-29, Grandville was acclaimed for his work, Les Metamorphoses du jour, a series of 70 scenes featuring characters with the bodies of men and faces of animals. His drawings were highly touted for the skill he employed in representing human characteristics in animal facial features.
W.P. Wilson was drawn to this fantastical illustration and created his own drawings based on Grandville’s work. Though the designs were occasionally unnatural and even absurd, they showed keen analysis of character and satirical ingenuity.