John Busby was born in Bradford in 1928. After National Service he studied at Leeds and Edinburgh Colleges of Art and was awarded post-graduate and major travel scholarships. On return from France and Italy, he taught drawing and painting at Edinburgh College of Art from 1956 until 1988, retiring then to become a full-time artist again.
He was President of the Society of Scottish Artists from 1976-79 and was a member of the Royal Scottish Academy and the Royal Scottish Society of Painters in Watercolour.
His lifelong interest in wild life and a fascination with birds in particular, led him to become one of the founder member of the Society of Wildlife Artists.
John led art courses in Crete, the Falklands and Galapagos islands and took part in projects with the Artists for Nature Foundation around the world. He illustrated over 35 books about birds and animals and has exhibited his work widely.