Thomas Gainsborough (1727-1788) was one of the most versatile painters of 18th century Britain. He equally masterfully painted both portraits and landscapes and painted more from human observation than from formal academic rules. While portraiture was his profession landscape painting was his pleasure. Unlike many painters of his time, Gainsborough had little interest in literary or historical themes. His most famous works include The Blue Boy, Portrait of a Lady in Blue, and Mr and Mrs Andrews.