Sir Alexander Macdonald, 1744 / 1745 - 1795. 9th Baronet of Sleat and 1st Baron Macdonald of Slate (About 1772)

About this artwork

Sir Alexander MacDonald was the head of Clan Uisdean, one of the branches of the extensive Clan Donald, and heir to the ancient Lordship of the Isles. He had estates on Skye and North Uist and is shown here standing on Cnoc an Eireachd, the Hill of the Assembly, the place where the Clan Chiefs had held their Courts of Justice before the imposition of a centralised state. In the background is Duntulm Castle, the former family seat. Sir Alexander has chosen to be portrayed as chief of his ancient celtic clan, in the traditional heart of their lands.

Sir George Chalmers

Sir George Chalmers

Chalmers was born in Edinburgh, the son of a herald painter to the Lyon court. He worked as a heraldic painter and engraver, which influenced the linear quality of his work, as well as studying with Allan Ramsay. After spending time in Florence and Minorca in 1751, due to his Jacobite sympathies, Chalmers returned to Edinburgh around 1760. He became a successful portrait painter, producing his best works in the 1770s. Chalmers later lived in Hull before moving to London in 1784, where he spent the last years of his life.