Elizabeth Blackadder

Mollie Hunter, 1922 - 2012. Writer (1988)

About this artwork

Mollie Hunter is best known as an author of fantasy and history novels for children. Born in Longniddry, East Lothian, she maintained that her country upbringing was always at the heart of her writing. Her father’s death when she was nine was a life-changing event which she described in her book ‘A Sound of Chariot’. When Hunter was forced to leave school at fourteen and to take a job in Edinburgh, she studied history and folklore in libraries during the evenings. In 1940 she married Thomas McIlwraith during a period of leave from his Navy training. They spent most of the war years apart, but later had two sons. In the 1980s McIlwraith famously helped Hunter recover from paralysis brought on by arthritis, by developing a special diet for her without animal fats.

Elizabeth Blackadder

Elizabeth Blackadder

Painter and printmaker Elizabeth Blackadder was born in Falkirk. She studied at Edinburgh College of Art under William Gillies, and lectured at the college from 1962 until her retirement in 1986. In 1956 she married fellow artist John Houston. Blackadder is well known for her delicate paintings of flowers and still life subjects, however, she has also painted landscapes and portraits. She paints with both oils and watercolour, but uses the latter most frequently as it is well suited to conveying her sensitive brushwork. Regular trips abroad, particularly to Japan, helped stimulate her interest in colour and pattern.