This year I went to Scotland (Edinburgh and the Shetland Islands) as part of an archaeological dig class with fellow Batesies. It has been my most inspiring experience yet…and still more Scottish paintings to come soon.
Old Scatness is an archaeological site in the Shetland Islands. The settlement is thousands of years old and has remnants of medieval, Viking, Pictish, and Bronze Age architecture. So one of the structures there was a wheelhouse that I genuinely fell in love with. It was restored to recreate the Viking lifestyle complete with hide covered wooden beds and a peat fire. It was a tiny structure and in the corner they made a little storage place with pots and candles. I took a picture of it and then I came home to paint it. So here it is. My finest work!
We look to Scotland for all our ideas of civilisation.
Lerwick is the capital of the Shetland Islands. At the harbor where we usually parked our van, there was a statue of the Holy Grail with a prayer at the side. I took a picture of it and then painted it.
Scottish by birth, British by law,
Highlander by the grace of God.
Esha Ness was the windiest place I had ever been to. Beautiful landscape.
From scenes like these old Scotia’s grandeur springs.
The Cotter’s Saturday Night.
The Earl of Southampton was actually English but I watched the film Anonymous while in Scotland. I also wanted to experiment with French Art Nouveau.
Not related to Scotland
This was done long before I went to Scotland. I took an oral French class with Prof. Curren and we concentrated on Maghreb culture, Oriental art and Francophone-Middle Eastern films. I knew I had to paint something related so I did this…hopefully I will do more in the future.
And I did this as part of the Middle Eastern influence.
Back on the topic of Scotland….
My heart’s in the Highlands, my heart is not here,
My heart’s in the Highlands, a-chasing the deer;
A-chasing the wild deer, and following the roe,
My heart’s in the Highlands, wherever I go.
My Heart’s in the Highlands.
Scotland…I will always love you.
And one last special note in memory of Evan Dube, a good soul who never left the Highlands. The winds there blow with a might in the character of the Scots. And whenever they pass we will know your spirit moves with the thousands who have passed on, dancing in the wind.