Carrick seems to have often drawn inspiration from classical sculpture and the dynamic sense of movement and pent up kinetic energy in 'The Gunner' is reminiscent of the 'Zeus of Artemision' bronze which I think may have inspired Carrick's figure. Instead of thunderbolt or trident Carrick's figure balances a 20th century shell. a modern take on a more ancient imagery, an approach which Carrick would adopt again in his Artillery and Engineer's Panels at the Scottish National War Memorial (see 'Castle Rock).
Below - Carrick's pre war statuette 'A Boy Putting a Stone' which again appears inspired by the Artemision bronze. Around 1920 Carrick apparently executed a small bronze of 'A Girl Skipping' which may have been a complementary figure.
'The Gunner' is unusual among Carrick's smaller bronze pieces in that the treatment and finishing of the surface is looser and more expressive. Normally his surfaces are more highly finished as in 'A Boy Putting a Stone'. It is perhaps possible that Carrick originally intended the work only as a sketch model for a full scale monument. The sculpture featured in a 2014 edition of the BBC Antiques Roadshow.