Glynn Boyd Harte was born in Rochdale in 1948. His father was a commercial artist and art teacher, and his grandfather a lithographic printer. The front garden path of their home was paved with old litho stones. Glynn grew up making toy theatres and playing the piano in local productions of Gilbert and Sullivan.
He attended Rochdale Grammar School and Rochdale School of Art. When he arrived in London at St Martin's School of Art as a student of illustration, the "far horizons" began to materialise, and he proceeded to the Royal College of Art (1970-73), where his tutors included Brian Robb, Edward Bawden, Paul Hogarth and Peter Blake.
Illustration was enjoying a revival, with a rich vein of irony and a love of technical perfection which guided Boyd Harte's work. At his Degree Show, Jonathan Gili spotted a drawing of a Staffordshire cottage which led to the publication by Warren Editions of a charmingly black-humoured book entitled 'Murderers' Cottages' (1976). With an exhibition at the Thumb Gallery, introduced by Tom Stoppard, Boyd Harte was launched.
His work as a book illustrator included a de luxe edition of John Betjeman's 'Metro-land' (1977) and 'Temples of Power' with Gavin Stamp (1979). These books revived hand-drawn lithography as a medium for book illustration, printed at the Curwen Studio by Stanley Jones. Boyd Harte's approach to building up layers of colour was perfectly suited to the medium and his contribution to lithography, although apparently retrospective in intent, is an important part of its historical development. Boyd Harte also illustrated the complete novels of E. M. Forster and Arnold Bennett's 'Old Wives' Tale' for the Folio Society.