Heather Louise McCartney
) (born on December 31, 1962 in
Tucson, Arizona), is the biological daughter of Linda McCartney (née Eastman)
and Joseph Melville See Jr., an American geologist.
McCartney's parents divorced after only eighteen months of marriage, because
See had taken off for Africa and expected his wife and daughter to follow. Linda
See refused, and sent a letter to her husband stating that she wanted a divorce.
After raising her daughter on her own in New York City for several years, Linda
McCartney married Paul McCartney of The Beatles in 1969, when her daughter was
six years old. That same year, she was formally adopted by Paul McCartney
through legal process (and prior consent from See, her biological father) and
took the McCartney name. Also in 1969, McCartney appeared in the last Beatles
movie, Let It Be. She has stated that although See had a lifelong
influence on her, she considers Paul McCartney to be her father.
A sister, Mary, was born in 1969, followed by another sister, Stella, in 1971
and a brother, James, in 1977. Heather's former stepmother Heather Mills is five
years younger than she. She has a much younger half-sister, Beatrice Milly
McCartney, born to Paul McCartney and Heather Mills on October 28, 2003. She has
four nephews and one niece: Mary's two sons Arthur Alistair Donald (born 3 April
1999) and Elliot Donald (born 1 August 2002), Stella's two sons Miller Alasdhair
James Willis (born 25 February 2005) and Beckett Robert Lee (born January 8,
2008, and her daughter Bailey Linda Olwyn Willis (born 8 December 2006).
Beginning shortly after the birth of Stella in 1971, McCartney and her
siblings accompanied their famous parents around the world with their successful
rock group Wings. This continued until 1980 when the band stopped touring. She
has said that, as a child, she had trouble forming friendships with other
children and had difficulty fitting in; she has also said she did not do well in
With encouragement from her mother, she took up printing at the
Photographers' Workshop in Covent Garden, and was talented enough to win the
Young Black and White Printer of the Year Award in Ilford for a photo she called
"Waterfall." Her success encouraged her to go on to art college, where she
discovered a talent for pottery and design.
During the early 1980s, Heather McCartney dated musician Billy Idol.
In her twenties, Heather McCartney was hospitalized in a clinic for treatment
of an emotional disorder. A few years after her release, she travelled to Mexico
with very little money and spent several months living among natives of the
Huichol and Tarahumara tribes. She felt liberated by this experience.
Later, McCartney moved to Arizona to live with See, where she became even
more interested in ceramics. She later returned to England to work as a potter.
Her pottery is now famous and critically acclaimed in the United Kingdom.
In 1995, McCartney's mother Linda was diagnosed with breast cancer and died
on April 17, 1998, in Tucson, Arizona.
To date, McCartney remains a prominent potter and designer, with exhibitions
in New York City, Phoenix, Tokyo, Paris and Sydney, and has been described by
Wedgewood as "one of Britain's most exciting new talents."
In 1999, Heather unveiled a line of house ware products in Atlanta, Georgia
called the Heather McCartney Houseware Collection. She was accompanied by Paul
In line with the beliefs of her parents, and siblings, Heather has interests
in ecology, animal rights and native peoples.
Currently, Heather McCartney lives on Paul McCartney's Sussex estate in
England, where she maintains a low profile and continues to work as a potter.