Tag Archives: activity

Sketching Workshops for Summer 2018

WorkshopPage LauristonCastleAs the weather improves in Edinburgh join me sketching around the city.

First off I have a welcome return to Lauriston Castle (above), a stunning 400 year old castle which overlooks the Firth of Forth from a 30 acre estate of beautiful gardens and woodlands. The perfect peaceful place to practice your sketching, I have led successful workshops here for a number of years and the venue has a special place in my heart. My 2018 workshops at Lauriston are on June 13th, August 4th and 17th.

WorkshopPage QueensGallery

New for 2018 are two dates at The Queen’s Gallery, Palace of Holyroodhouse. I will be running afternoon workshops capturing the Canongate area and details around the Palace exterior, influenced by their current Canaletto exhibition. This is an exclusive chance to sketch with me at Holyrood and I expect tickets to sell fast. Workshops will be on 15th June and 3rd August.

WorkshopPage CityArtCentre

Following on from last months debut Sketching Tour at the City Art Centre I will be returning to this fantastic setting for another sketching workshop on 20th July. This is a great opportunity to draw with me as we tour and draw our way along Market Street and the Mound area before returning to the 5th floor of CAC for refreshments and to colour our drawings.

WorkshopPage Arienas

And don’t forget my wonderful Sketching Days at Arienas Collective in the heart of the New Town. These small relaxed workshop days run from a beautiful home close to Queens Street from where we tour the cobbled streets of Georgian New Town and the Portrait Gallery,  drawing all sorts from street furniture to Robert Burns statues! Lunch is included and plenty of delightful nibbles and drinks thanks to the very hospitable Arienas Collective. The next full day workshop is on Friday 22nd June

You can book all these tours on my Workshop page HERE, and I look forward to seeing you at a workshop through the summer.

Exciting news ahead for August.: I am currently planning a return to sketching in the West End with Paper Tiger, the must visit shop for beautiful and creative giftcards, stationary and gifts. Details to come soon.




A business trip to the Zoo

ZooCorporate1This week I was asked by The Leith Agency to run a drawing activity for one of their clients, at a corporate event inside the Chimpanzee enclosure at Edinburgh Zoo.

My workshops and sketching tours usually happen in grand architecture filled locations like the West End or beautifully tranquil gardens such as that of Lauriston Castle. Never before have we sketched Lemurs, chimpanzees and penguins, or heard the distinctive calling sounds of the Buff-cheeked Gibbon as we put pen to paper.

But it is the perfect place to draw and draw fast as each of the creatures on show although obviously are enclosed within a cage, they are free to move and scratch and simply walk away mid drawing!

It was great to take a group of about 45 people out into the Zoo for an hour of creativity, after a little introduction and guidence to be bold, to try and capture the movement and the dynamic lines of each species they all set off with just paper, a fineliner pen and a coloured marker.

The activity linked into the days themes of being bold, decisive and quick to adapt.

And the results were fantastic, as you can see from the examples here. It proved to be a great way to get some creative fresh air after a morning of meetings and talks, plus the activity linked into the days themes of being bold, decisive and quick to adapt. We had fun back in the conference room comparing our drawings, adding a mount to our favourites and picking a winner.


I look forward to doing more, and if you would like to book myself to come and run a creative activity at your team building corporate day, AGM or similar then email me HERE.

Edinburgh Zoo website

Leith Agency website

Under the bridges on the Firth of Forth with Inner Forth Landscape Initiative

IFLI_BlacknessCastleLast week I ran a painting and sketching activity on a boat trip along the Firth of Forth with the Inner Forth Landscape Initiative.

The IFLI is a Heritage Lottery Funded Landscape Partnership Scheme which focuses on the upper Firth of Forth area. A beautiful and often overlooked part of the country home to a wide range of wildlife and plant life.



I had visited the area with IFLI  on land for a sktch trip to the stunning hidden world of Kennetpans Distillery, but that as I said was on land over the Forth Bridge and along the A985 to the Kincardine Bridge.

This time we were to travel under the Kincardine Bridge on the Maid of the Forth passenger boat, which regularly ferrys people over to the island of Inchcolm.

Around ninety people boarded at South Queensferry and we headed west under the road bridge and almost finished (the multiple sections of road are almost touching) South Queensferry Crossing. It was amazing to see these huge structures from a new angle, the stormy reddening sky behind made the view unforgettable.

We passed by various interesting sites like Rosyth Dockyard with its tenant aircraft carriers, the smoke and flame bellowing from Grangemouth contrasted well with the ghostly, now unused Longannet Power Station. As we passed by each experts took turns on the microphone to tell us about each location.

I had given out pen and paper for passengers to try and capture the sites as we floated by, and below are some of the great sketches people created.


On the lower deck I set up a watercolouring table where paint could be added to sketches drawn or visitors had the option of colouring some pre drawn line drawings. Below is a selection of those created.


There was a great atmosphere on board and I thank all those who took part and got into the sketching spirit. It was facinating to see an area I thought I knew from a completely new perspective so thank you to IFLI for providing such a trip. Have a look at the links below for similar events in the future, and remember to take your sketchbook!

Below are a few more of my sketches from the trip, click on each to see a larger version.

IFLI_BoatFlag IFLI_Grangemouth IFLI_LonganantPowerStation IFLI_Watching IFLI_KincardineBridge IFLI_Limekilns

Inner Forth Landscape Initiative website

Maid of the Forth website