‘BONSAI’ Book Cover
‘BONSAI’ Book Cover

An ex-Scot, Sandy Nicolson,living in San Francisco had bought a few of my paintings to remind him of home – the beaches and landscapes of the West Coast of Scotland.
Sandy had completed writing a novel and asked me if I was interested in coming up with ideas for the cover of the book – which, of course, I was delighted to do.
After looking at several options (one of which was a bonsai tree which had died and I sprayed silver to keep as a ‘object d’art’) my portrait of a friend’s daughter was chosen as it hinted at a key element in the storyline and seemed to invite finding out more.
As the novel says ‘everyone has a story to tell……’

Bonsai is available on Amazon in Kindle, Paperback and Hardback formats.

Spanish Sun
Spanish Sun

The Flower Shop

A change of environment necessitated a change of painting style – the hill top white villages of Southern Spain forced me into straighter lines and a different colour palette.
A few examples from the recent series of works.

Spanish Sun
Spanish Sun

The Blue Door

Spanish Sun
Spanish Sun

The Red Chair

Autumn in Kelvingrove Park, Glasgow
Autumn in Kelvingrove Park, Glasgow

Overlooking Glasgow University on an Autumn day – oil on canvas 60x80cms.

On the Easel
On the Easel

A new size (40x80cms) and a bolder more simple brushstrokes in the first of a series of 5

A well known location of Skipness towards the north of Arran and Lochranza

‘Ferness’ (Local Hero – the movie)
‘Ferness’ (Local Hero – the movie)

Arguably the best Scottish movie ever made, directed by Bill Forsyth, ‘Local Hero’ tells the story of a USA oil company wanting to buy a small hamlet on the coast to develop as an oil terminal.
Set in the fictitious hamlet of ‘Ferness’ which actually was the village of Pennan on the east coast and the beach of Camusdarach on the west coast as the director could not find a location that met both his needs visually.
So the mythical ‘Ferness’ existed only on screen which is why I attempted, with a bit of artistic license, to create the place we could only see in the movie.

If you look hard enough you will find the famous telephone box.

If you haven’t seen the movie – it’s a gem.

Off to Texas, USA
Off to Texas, USA

‘Carsaig Bay’Knapdale – looking out across the Sound of Jura to the top end of Jura (where George Orwell lived and completed his novel 1984) on a sunny afternoon. A favourite spot of mine with the advantage of the Inn at Tayvallich nearby.
Bought from a Gallery in Edinburgh and shipped over to Texas.

‘Last Man Standing’ – 8th Ave, New York
‘Last Man Standing’ – 8th Ave, New York

Oil on Canvas, 29×48″

A regular ‘pilgrimage’ for me when I am in New York is a visit to 723 8th Avenue to see a solitary fragment of 3 buildings sitting alone on an empty block – doubtless waiting their fate of demolition in preparation for another towering skyscraper.
Hence I was determined to capture the scene before this view was lost forever.
As an ‘artwork’ in their own right, they give a hint of what the street would have looked like many years ago – full of colour and character, the Celtic Pub being quite magnificent with its open roof, sculptures and colourful facade reminiscent of the buildings on the Grand Canal in Venice.

However, all is not lost!

Last visit to Manhattan showed the pile drivers on site pounding away but, more importantly,
on the site hoarding an architect outline on the mighty and spectacular tower block soon to appear – SURROUNDING the three buildings- no less.

Now my visits will have a ‘shrine’ to worship at – a sacred piece of heritage preserved!

Thank God (just continuing the religious metaphor!)

Sunday Afternoon in Central Park, New York
Sunday Afternoon in Central Park, New York

Just in its finishing stages, 32×40″ in its frame – Oil on canvas.

I have always been fascinated by the huge rocks in Central Park and the contrast of the peace and tranquility of the Park with the view of the stunning City skyscape. The two girls sitting and contemplating the view were probably doing what the Native American Indians did many years ago – without the buildings, of course!

On the Easel
On the Easel

Underway with my first triptych – the beach on Gigha across three canvases 32″x38″. Also moving on to a 5 panel painting just to see how it works! Still haven’t found out what you call a five panel painting!

Missing Girl Found
Missing Girl Found

‘MISSING’ GIRLS FOUND

Following the search on local media friends soon identified the two girls prominently featured pulling their sledges in the snow – Jane and Rose from Glasgow’s West End. For Christmas they were presented with a copy of the painting by Stag Gallery owner Cameron Reid in Buchanan Galleries.

Off to California
Off to California

An ex-pat living in San Francisco remembered the happy memories of the West Coast of Scotland and particularly the Isle of Mull – so one of my ‘signature’ pieces was acquired and winged its way with the help of UPS to its new home overlooking the Bay.

Lovely to think of it hanging there!

 

‘Sunday in the Park with Snow’ 30×40″ oil on canvas (Kelvingrove Park, Glasgow)
‘Sunday in the Park with Snow’ 30×40″ oil on canvas (Kelvingrove Park, Glasgow)

Originally painted for my Christmas card, the new Stag Gallery in Buchanan Galleries wanted to feature it in their window in the run up to Christmas. The idea then came up that it would nice to try and find the little girl featured in the painting and hence the ‘Who’s that Girl?’ quest was launched and the media responded with Glasgow Live, among others, putting the search on-line. Within a day, friends had spotted the story and a proud mum let us know who she was – as it turned out both the mum and the girls’ sister were also in the painting allowing us to have a signed and framed Giclee print ready in time for the family as a Christmas present from the Gallery  and myself.