Monday, November 4, 2013

Inspiration from the Outer Hebrides

My family and I were in South Uist last week, one of the islands of the Outer Hebrides, Scotland. We experienced every type of weather imaginable, but the big skies, low sun and autumnal colours of the land were inspirational. The landscape seemed to change with every passing moment as clouds passed, changing the light and bringing an unparalleled drama to everything we saw. The wind didn't stop the entire time we were there (with the exception of when we loaded into the car at 5:30am to catch the ferry to leave), but it didn't stop us exploring the hills, ruins, lochs and beaches of this incredible place. Inspired by the seaweed and my new love of watercolour, I did these two paintings while we were there.
Ascophyllum nodosum is known as knotted wrack. I
collected this sample from a beach on the island of Eriskay.

Fucus vesiculosus goes by the common name bladder wrack,
named obviously for the gas-filled bladders that give floatation
to this seaweed. This particular specimen was much more red than
other samples I have seen, hence the colouration.