Hannah Frank was born in Glasgow on 15 March 1930 and studied at Glasgow University and the Glasgow School of Art. She produced her trademark black-and-white drawings from the age of seventeen and between 1927 and 1932 the GUM (Glasgow University Magazine) rarely appeared without one of her drawings, signed 'Al Aaraaf', her chosen pen name.

In the 1950s she took up sculpture, studying with Benno Schotz, and both her drawings and sculpture were exhibited in the Royal Glasgow Institute, the Royal Academy, and the Royal Scottish Academy, throughout her long career. She continued to produce sculpture until her early nineties.

In 2002, aged 94, she moved with her husband, Lionel Levy, to a care home in Glasgow, where her drawings and sculpture were also on show. She died in Glasgow, Scotland on 18 December 2008.