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Old Broubster Village

Throughout the Highlands in the Nineteenth Century, tenant farmers were evicted from their homes, or 'crofts', during the notorious Highland Clearances. Landowners, in a drive for efficiency and more profitable land use, wanted to replace the old system of small-holdings with large sheep ranches. The crofters were forced out of their scattered homes, often in a brutal manner, and re-housed in new communities. The land that they were given was often of poor quality and they had to work hard to maintain even a subsistence level of life. During this period many people took up the offer of a new life overseas, emigrating to Canada, New Zealand and Australia, where their descendants still have strong links with Scotland.

In 1839 tenants from the estates of Broubster and Shurrery, in Caithness, were resettled in a new village. Land was provided for them, but they probably had to build their own houses. The dwellings were in the form of long-houses, which consisted of a …
Recent posts

North Coast 500

In 2015 the North Highland Initiative started a project to boost tourism in the northern counties of Scotland. The idea was to publicise a 500 mile route through Inverness-shire, Ross & Cromarty, Sutherland and my home county of Caithness, and promote it as a superb road trip. I don't know how successful they expected it to be, but it has quickly become very popular and has been called one of the top five coastal routes in the World. In fact its popularity is becoming a problem for the local residents: some of the roads are single-track, with bays at intervals to allow two vehicles to pass each other, but there is an etiquette for their use that strangers are not always aware of. The result is that local people going about their business find themselves held up by slow-moving tourist vehicles, so if you use the route please pull over and allow other vehicles to pass. The amount of traffic will probably also cause damage to the roads, which were not intended for heavy use. Desp…

Christmas Wishes

A couple of my latest watercolours and -

Best Wishes to all for Christmas

"The Fuel Bowser", Watercolour, 24 x 18 cm

"View at Skelbo", Watercolour, 16 x 26 cm

www.keithtilley.co.uk

Shelter Stone Crag

"Shelter Stone Crag" Watercolour, 25 x 36 cm

My latest post on  A Picture of Northern Scotland  is about Shelter Stone Crag in the Cairngorm Mountains. It is named after a massive boulder that has a large cavity beneath it, providing an overnight shelter for travellers in this remote area.

Read more here

#tilleyart #watercolour #painting #Scotland #Cairngorms

Catching up

It's been quite a long time since I've posted anything here, there's just so much to occupy my time on the internet these days. I now have a couple of Google+ collections: "A Picture of Northern Scotland", where I post paintings of landmark locations with a bit of background information, and "Keith Tilley Watercolours", where I post some of my latest work as I produce it. Although I don't like Facebook most people seem to be active there at the moment, so I post there regularly as well and it has led to a few sales.

In the real world, I have been painting more small pieces recently. They are proving to be quite popular, partly I think because they are lower-priced, but also because they make good presents, especially at this time of year. Below are some examples. They are all watercolours and are 13 x 18 cm or 5 x 7 inches.


 "The Dounreay Dome"


"Backlass Township"


"Evening Light at Ackergill Tower"


 "Highland Cattl…

Exhibition in Thurso

I'm having an exhibition in Thurso at Caithness Horizons, running from 7th June to 3rd July. Among the 15 paintings in the show, there are these three little sunset pieces.


 "Lochmore Cottage at Sunset" Watercolour, 13 x 18 cm

 "Sunset Colours" Watercolour, 13 x 18 cm


"Sunset and Green Fields" Watercolour, 13 x 18 cm
www.keithtilley.co.uk

Moine House

"Moine House, Tongue" Watercolour on Fabriano Artistico 300gsm Rough paper 25 x 36 cm
West of Tongue, in Sutherland, there is a large peat bog called The Moine, which stretches all the way over to the next valley. At more-or-less the highest point there is a ruined building, called Moine House, which I have always found very striking. It is a wild and lonely spot and it has a background of dramatic mountains. I assumed that it was an old drovers' inn, but a plaque* on the wall tells the story of how it was erected as a refuge for travellers.