Born in London in 1961. Studied at Camberwell School of Arts and Crafts (1979-84) and at the Royal Academy Schools (1984-87). In her Foundation year at Camberwell she visited India for the first time, and has been back almost every year since then. Her vigorous painting and heightened colouring style draws on the experience of the immense mountains and vast landscapes of that country. Best known as a painter of over-life-size portraits, she also paints interior scenes of her house and studio, as well as city scenes and landscapes. She is unabashed about being able to paint from photographs, but always prefers drawing and painting from life, a practice which she also encourages in her students.
In 2000 she became, and still is, the Founding Director, along with the Prince of Wales himself, of the Prince’s Drawing School. In 2002 she won the BP Portrait Award at the National Portrait Gallery for her half-length portrait of ‘Anthony’; the ‘prize’ she won being the privilege to do the portrait of Dame Cicely Saunders, the founder of the Hospice movement, which entered the collection of the National Portrait Gallery in 2005. She has held solo exhibitions at Abbot Hall Art Gallery (2006) and at the National Portrait Gallery itself (2014).