John o' Groats Hotel

John o' Groats House Hotel
25 x 35 cm

The settlement of John o' Groats gets its name from a Dutchman, called Jan de Groot, who ran a ferry from there to the Orkney Isles in the early 16th Century.

The striking John o' Groats House Hotel was built in 1875, near to the site of Jan de Groot's house. It's in a run-down state at the moment, but there are plans to renovate it and to improve the area generally.


  1. Nice little sketch, with a lovely story along with it.

    Jan de Groot, yes a very familiar name over here still.

  2. I wandered through you blog again
    to see what I was missing here and
    now I know what it's missing in
    this sketch. It's the suggestion!
    It's much to much painted out, the
    last time you painted Jan's house
    it was more simplified, suggestive
    and there for more interesting for
    the viewer to imagine things.

    Maybe you should do some urban
    scene more often, for that matter
    I would love too see where you
    live, ... in watercolour that is.

  3. Beautiful painting - I have been up there and you make it seem less desolate than it felt on that day. I hope the hotel's face lift goes well and it is restored to its former glory.

  4. Keith, I like it. continued happy painting to you.

  5. Thanks René. I can see what you mean. When I paint buildings close-up, I tend to treat them as portraits and get caught up in trying to get a true likeness. When they are further away it's easier to paint them more loosely. That's something I'll have to think about.

  6. Thanks PurestGreen. It would be really desolate without the hotel.

  7. Hi Keith!... It's a "dilly"!... It's a Tilley! Stay the course!Your paintings have a panoramic beauty... they say Scotland.... sunny... and unfettered spaces.

    Good Painting my Friend!

  8. Does the desolation of the scene and the grandeur of the hotel actually 'come together'? I realize, of course, that this is the reality of the scene, but it is interesting that two so disparate images can reside together. For me, they both seem to pull in their own direction.

  9. I think it was the contrast that interested me Diane. I seem to be drawn to buildings in isolated positions.


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