First trained as an engraver, the artist then studied at the RA Schools and travelled extensively throughout Britain. He produced watercolours, and his illustrations were employed widely in guidebooks and historical studies (Cornwall, Wales, etc). He made a painting of St Michael's Mount, which was used as the front cover of the illustrated guide book published by John St Aubyn in 1978.

Martin Hardie comments that his work was certainly accomplished but not necessarily original. From 1827 he worked as a drawing master in Camberwell, travelling widely in all of the countries of the UK, Belgium, Switzerland and Italy, producing pictures for replication. Many of his drawings were engraved for books on English topography. The artist died in Camberwell on January 17, 1876. His daughter, Maria Gastineau, also became an artist.