Nigel Lambourne was born in Croydon, Surrey. Studied at Regent Street Polytechnic School of Art and Central School of Arts and Crafts in 1934-37; at Royal College of Art with Robert Austin and Malcolm Osborne in 1937-39. Met Barbara Ward Standen, who became his wife in 1942. After Army service in World War II, completed his degree course at Royal College of Art. Awarded the Medal for Draughtsmanship and the Engraver and Lithographers Diploma. Taught at Isleworth Evening Institute, later at Guildford College of Art in 1951-61 and Leicester Polytechnic in 1962-72. In the late 1940s began to establish himself as an illustrator of books for the Folio Society. In 1947 exhibited at the Colnaghi Gallery. Held his first solo show of drawings at Kensington Art Gallery in 1949, later one man exhibitions included Wilton and Zwemmer Galleries. In 1950-51 worked on Festival of Britain South Bank Exhibition. In 1950 undertook drawing expedition to Antwerp with the painter and friend Clifford Hall. In 1951 exhibited with Clifford Hall and John Buckland Wright (all three artists used to share the cost of a model) at the Colnaghi Gallery. Lambourne was a masterly draughtsman, with a taut, springing line, shown to great effect in his drawings of low life and female figure. Victoria Art Gallery in Bath held a retrospective exhibition in 1992. Abbott and Holder held an exhibition in 2005. Arts Council, Contemporary Art Society, National Galleries of Australia, New Zealand, Canada and Museum of Modern Art in New York hold examples of his work.