Gouache on hot press 300 gm paper, 15 x 11 inches, 2022

The early and ground-breaking geologists Peach and Home stayed at Inchnadamph in the early 1900’s. In the glens behind the hotel the limestone rock is porous, rivers disappear and reappear, there are caves, and limestone pavements high up just like the Burren in Ireland and Malham Cove in Yorkshire, with specially adapted plants.


During my relocation to Scotland I was without a studio to make larger scale paintings. I worked on a series of small scale pieces on heavy watercolour paper in oil pastel, gouache and watercolour pencil. Materials which are manageable in the domestic environment. These works are based on being there – being in the light of the rising sun in the early morning at Tentsmuir forest and beach. Or on other days, it’s the challenge of hill country in the Cairngorms, or the soft hummocks and ferns of the raised bog at Star Moss in Fife. I am equally drawn to the small scale wilderness landscapes at the back of St Andrews —Lumbo and Spinkie dens, Lade Braes and Hallow Hill, with their trees, rocks and burn, heron, bullfinch, blackcap, stonechat, and red squirrel. The hill behind my house at the edge of Cupar that holds Ceres Moor and Owlet wood. I find the small scale, liquid brushstrokes and intense colour of gouache paint to be especially effective. I continue to make these small works on paper as a way through to the bigger pieces.