Charles Peale Polk painted a series of portraits of George Washington during the early part of Washington's presidency in response to the overwhelming public demand for images of the young nation's new leader. Polk had trained under his uncle, Charles Willson Peale, having moved in with the Peale family at the age of nine following his mother's death and his father's acceptance of a permanent commission at sea. When Polk began his series of presidential portraits, he based his likeness of Washington on Peale's 1787 "Convention" portrait, modifying Peale's formal, bust-length depiction into a distinctive composition of his own: a half-length portrait showing the President on the battlefield at Princeton, New Jersey. In Polk's version of Washington at Princeton, a subject he painted approximately sixty times, the president appears at the height of his military service as commander-in-chief of the American forces, his blue and buff general's uniform updated to include three stars on the epaulet, the designation for commander-in-chief beginning in 1780. Polk's portraits of Washington demonstrate the emergence of his own distinct style and constitute a highly individual contribution to the body of early Presidential portraiture.