William Ireland was a colourist, trained at the Glasgow School of Art. His use of colour is distinctive, but he was a versatile artist, both in style and subject. Figures, gardens, horses and the Scottish landscape (which was his home) are amongst his favourite subjects. However, he has also taken inspiration from the many houses he has lived in and visited, both in the UK and France, and his warm, tranquil depiction of interiors represents his best-known subject matter. Some of his work can be seen on the covers of books by Maeve Binchy, who said of him, "He paints a room that makes you think the people will be coming back at any moment, so I keep looking, hoping that I'll see them! There is so much light, warmth and hope in his paintings that I am bursting with pride to be associated with him."