Bog painting.



Peatbog on watercolour paper 78 x 56 cm.

Sitting on the beach at the edge of the loch, a convoy of great grey battleship clouds steam in from Glencoe. And yet, right here the sun is shining and if I close my eyes and listen to the gentle waves it could, almost, at a pinch be summer in Scotland, even at the back end of January. The lone rowan, the sentinel guarding my walks over the moor sighs in the wind. I set off to see how far I might get and how quickly my optimism is dented. I stumble, fall, wrench myself free from the quagmire, which seems determined to keep me. This is also a visit to make some work. I am dragging a large piece of watercolour paper behind me, in and out of the lochans and pools and peat banks. It stains, leaving traces of plant life and is soaked through. I must look curious to anyone who might tbe watching, but then, I haven’t seen a living thing since I arrived. I consider the paper and its marks , thinking ahead to what I will do to it back in the studio. Carefully rolling it up I put it in my rucksack and start to make my way back. At one point I sink, getting stuck and realise I shouldn’t be quite so cavalier. I have no knowledge of any use here. And then there’s the story I read about a woman trying to cross the moor in winter…… I spot some faint deer tracks, they know how to traverse the waterland. With their guidance I temporarily find firmer ground, until their track disappears and I’m baffled again as to how to proceed. When I can look up the light here is beautiful today. The sky pulses bright, then shadowed as different parts of the landscape are spotlit, like a lighting rig set for a stage. I am interrupted by my phone. Both my children have messaged me, one from Dundee the other from China with questions about van hire and the desire for scones. These things are important.  I make it back to the beach, ford the burn and just as think I will see no wildlife at all today I spot a small flitting bird in a stand of spruce on the track back to the station. I wait and it appears on a branch right in front of me, a goldcrest. My heart races . How stunning to see the smallest of British birds in the enormity of this landscape. A wonderful day.

Postcard Loch Lomond.



Oil on found wood – 14.5 x 9.5.

An investigation into the found nature of things, about landscape and nature, the familiar, the nostalgic, and what it might suggest about identity.

More conversation to follow…..



Charcoal and watercolour on paper – 37.5 x 22.5 cm.

From Rannoch moor the water that collects will flow all the way to either the North sea in the east or to the Atlantic in the west.


This story is told by A D Cunningham in his book ‘Tales of Rannoch’.

The Watershed Battle.

When the world was young and Rannoch Moor was covered with trees there lived two giants, Anier and Anear. While was one was rapacious the other was destructive and they were very jealous of one another. They both wanted the waters of the  Moor.

Giants are usually quarrelsome and small minded and these were no exceptions; they bickered and argued all day long about who should have the waters. Eventually they came to blows and their screams and curses could be heard from far and wide. They tore up the trees and snapped off the trunks to use as clubs and missiles.

For thirty days and thirty nights the battle raged. Although both were wounded and sorely bruised they fought on stubbornly until the Moor was a wilderness, not a tree was left standing. Finally, exhausted, and neither having gained anything, they agreed on a truce. They decided to divide the waters. Anier was to take the rivers to the Atlantic by the way of the Etive, the Kinglass and the Orchy, while Anear was to take the easterly flow by Loch Laidon, the river Gaur, Loch Rannoch, the tummel and the Tay to the North sea.