Born in Kirkintilloch, Jack Knox studied at Glasgow School of Art and afterwards in Paris. In 1965 he joined the staff of Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design in Dundee and in 1981 became Head of Painting at Glasgow School of Art. He is now retired and devotes his time to his painting. In his self-portrait Knox has limited his palette to blacks, greys and whites in emulation of the great Spanish painter Velasquez. Knox says of self-portraiture: ?Painting yourself is much more difficult than painting someone else. You may pick and choose with the characteristics you wish to incorporate in the picture of another person, but face to face with yourself, the analysis has to be relentless?.