Margot Sandeman was born in Glasgow in 1922, the daughter of Archibald Sandeman, a self-taught water colourist, and Muriel Boyd, internationally known embroiderer who trained with Jessie Newbery at Glasgow School of Art. Sandeman's own time at Glasgow School of Art was cut short by the outbreak of the Second World War, but by the early 1940s she had already established a friendship which was as deep as it was lasting with painter Joan Eardley, and had formed links with another contemporary, Ian Hamilton Finlay, with whom she later collaborated both on publications from the Wild Hawthorn Press and on a series of paintings.
Her unique talents were recognised early, by press critics and award judges alike - she won the RSA's prestigious Guthrie Award in 1958, and the Anne Redpath award in 1970. Also in 1970 she won a Scottish Arts Council Award, and in 1989 was the Scottish winner of the Laing Competition. Her solo exhibtions have been with the Richard Demarco Gallery in Edinburgh and the Hughson Gallery in Glasgow. She has contributed to mixed exhibitions throughout Britain and in the USA, and is represented in public and private collections in Scotland, and private collections in England.