Willem Pieter Hoevenaar was born into an artistic family in Utrecht. His grandfather Adrianus Sr and father Adrianus Jr were draughtsmen and glass engravers, his brother Cornelis Willem and his son Jozef painted genre scenes and still lifes, and his nephew Cornelis Willem Jr specialised in landscapes. Willem Pieter mainly painted traditional Dutch interiors and outdoor scenes, which he enlivened with figures. His watercolours and sepia drawings were very popular in his own day and his work was regularly included in the annual Exhibition of Dutch Living Masters between 1828 and 1863. Hoevenaar was made a member of the Koninklijke Akademie in Amsterdam in 1850.