Bateman was an artist who, in his own words, ‘went mad on paper'. Having studied drawing and painting at Westminster School of Art and Goldsmiths' College, London, he approached drawing people not as they looked but as they felt - then an unusual concept.
His early cartoons appeared in The Royal Magazine and The Tatler, and from 1906 he regularly began contributing to Punch Magazine. In 1912 he did a weekly series of sketches for the theatre page of the Sketch.
Invalided out of the First World War in 1915, having spent time with the London Regiment, Bateman became known for his cartoons for Punch.
In the twenties and thirties Bateman made his name through The Tatler, The Sketch and The Bystander, specialising in the depiction of angry outrage caused by anti-social or unthinking behaviour, through his ‘The Man Who…' of cartoon series. Although rather formulaic, The Man Who… proved to be lucrative and featured in advertising campaigns for Shell, Colman's mustard, Guinness and a number of cigarette companies.
Shortly after the outbreak of the Second World War, Bateman decided he could afford the luxury of semi-retirement, but he still contributed to the war effort designing posters for the Ministry of Information, including his most famous work: ‘Coughs and Sneezes Spread Diseases'.
In the late 1960s, tired of a post-war Britain, Bateman moved to the Maltese island of Gozo where, he painted landscape watercolours until he passed away.