Above: Dorothy Dunnett’s only portrait of one of her characters – Archie Abernethy, from the Lymond Chronicles.

As a teenager, Dorothy loved sketching and painting watercolours and dreamed of pursuing a career as an artist.  The outbreak of World War II quickly put an end to her aspirations, but after the war she found her way back to the arts and began taking evening classes at the Edinburgh School of Art.  After she and Alastair married and moved to Glasgow, Dorothy continued studying, this time at the famous Glasgow School of Art where she continued to learn into the 1950s.

Dorothy’s love of art was clear as was her talent as a portraitist.  One of her early self-portraits, a pencil sketch done in the 1940s, is now at the National Portrait Gallery of Scotland. She began to exhibit works at the Royal Scottish Academy in the 1950s under the name Dorothy Halliday.

Throughout her life, Dorothy painted with words and told vibrant stories with her art. The dynamism and talent she had shone through in both the literary and visual medium, making her all the more fascinating as a creative mind.

Read more about Dorothy’s portraits and paintings.