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Showing posts from December, 2011

Reflections of Strathy Point

Reflections of Strathy Point Watercolour 25 x 50 cm

This is the larger commissioned painting that I mentioned recently. It's another view of Strathy Point Lighthouse, but on a calmer day when the sun was shining. On days like that it's nice to wander around the headland among all the rocky outcrops, with wonderful views along the coast in both directions.

The lighthouse has been automated now so there are no longer any lighthouse-keepers living there. The cottages have been sold to private owners. It must be an interesting place to live and maybe a bit frightening sometimes, especially in a storm with 100 mph winds like the one we had recently.


Happy Christmas to all my readers

A Scottish Longhouse

The Corr Watercolour 25 x 35 cm
I came across this old building a while ago. It has a thatched roof and looks very old. A local farmer told me that, until fairly recently, it was live‌d in by two elderly sisters. I have since discovered that it is a very rare example of a surviving longhouse, a type of dwelling once common in Scotland. They were simple buildings with only one or two rooms and an animal byre. The walls were very thick and they were set into the ground to protect them from the wind and the cold.

This one, known as The Corr, is being offered for sale, but at a price of £200,000 I don't know who is going to be interested. I think it will cost a lot to renovate it and there will be a lot of planning restrictions. It really needs a national conservation organisation to take it over.

Stroma

Stroma Watercolour 25 x 35 cm
Stroma is an island just off the north coast of Caithness. At one time it had a small self-contained community, but no-one lives there any more. The abandoned houses can be seen clearly from the mainland, giving the island a ghostly atmosphere. The only inhabitants now are the sheep, which are taken over by boat to graze on the grassy pastures.

This painting was a recent commission. It was for someone who had visited the island and was left with a lasting impression of it.