In 1924 Ramsay Macdonald became Prime Minister and Foreign Secretary of Britain's first Labour government. Born in Lossiemouth, Moray, he was the son of a local girl and a Highland ploughman who never married. He lived in poverty for much of his early life. This first Labour administration only lasted a few months and was troubled by industrial unrest culminating in the General Strike of 1926, which Ramsay Macdonald had done his utmost to avert. Painted in 1926, this is a curiously private image of a public figure during a particularly turbulent phase of his career.