Norman Cornish was born in 1919 in Spennymoor, County Durham. Cornish started work as a miner in 1933, at the age of 14. He continued to work as a miner even after his painting career was well established, he retired from mining in 1966 and became a full-time artist. Cornish painted images, very much in the style of his contemporary and friend L.S. Lowry, of the miner’s working life and his observation of the mining community and everyday people going about their everyday activities. Cornish was granted an honorary Master of Arts degree by Newcastle University in 1974 and an honorary doctorate by Sunderland University in 2012.