Happy Birthday Richard Wilson!! The painter was born in England in 1714 to a Welsh clergyman and received a classical education. He began as a portrait painter in London but switched to landscapes as early as 1746. His “Italian period” was the turning point in his career; he resided in Rome and Campagna, then returned to England but continued to paint Italian landscapes. He was a founding member of the Royal Academy and served as the librarian beginning in 1776. His greatest work is considered to be Snowdon, (the highest peak in Wales) in which he achieved pure classicism in the beautiful design and glowing light. He repeated the design in many renditions that can be found in most English galleries today.