English draughtsman, printmaker, architect and painter, William Walcot was born in 1874 in Lustdorf near Odessa, Russia. When he was seventeen, he began to study architecture under Louis Benois at the Imperial Academy of Art in Saint Petersburg. He went to Paris where he continued his studies at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts and the Atelier Redon. He practiced as an architect briefly in Moscow, designing the Hotel Metropole in 1898.
In 1907, Walcot settled in London where he was employed as a draughtsman by the South-African born architect, Eustace Frere. In 1933, Walcot designed one London building, 61 St. James Street, but his main architectural activity was that of a freelance draughtsman. He produced drawings and etchings for architects to show their clients and to exhibit at the Royal Academy summer exhibitions.
Throughout the 1920s and 1930s, Walcot was the most celebrated architectural draughtsman in England, enhancing the scale and drama of the buildings he depicted with his mastery of techniques including watercolor and gouache.