Whistler got in trouble, before he painted all the time. He was paid by the government to plot maps of the East coast, and to draw the elaborate compass in the lower right hand corner that helped sea captains and first mates line up their ships to face home. Most days, though, he filled the dull hours by sketching mermaids, sea dragons, and whales. When the men in charge found the little indiscretions, they fired him.


"... all my lovers were there with me, all my past and futures."

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