(b London, 20 May 1726; d Richmond, Surrey [now in Greater London], 19 July 1770). English portrait painter, a pupil of Knapton. He began as a specialist in pastel and never altogether gave up the medium, but in the 1760s he turned with great success to oils—for a few years he was the only serious rival to Gainsborough and Reynolds. Like them, he was a founder member of the Royal Academy. His work is charming, vivacious, and totally unintellectual: in the words of Sir Ellis Waterhouse, ‘He went all out for health and youth and fine clothes, a strong likeness and no nonsense.
Text source: The Oxford Dictionary of Art and Artists (Oxford University Press)