Tag Archives: gallery

Scottish Artists Celebrated

Today a new exhibition opens at the City Art Centre featuring work by the Glasgow Boys and the Scottish Colourists amongst many others.

‘National Treasure: The Scottish Modern Arts Association’ reveals the story of this a unique collection, and the artists represented in it.

Founded in Edinburgh in 1907, the association was established by artists and their supporters, and aimed to secure a collection of modern Scottish art.

I loved how diverse the mediums and subjects are, from the stunning details in Ernest Lumsden’s etchings to the loose pastel sketches from Julia Beatrice How. There are small delicate pieces and large scale bright and colourful murals. I also loved how I knew some of the scenes and subjects from around Scotland.

Exhibitions like this of multiple artists using a wide range of mediums and styles are so inspiring. Everyone should see this (it would be a great school visit) as you can see that art can come in all styles, sizes and some you will like and some you will not. To me they show that there is not a right and wrong, and everyone can create their art.

Well done City Art Centre, I will be back to take it all in again. Go see it, before mid October.

City Art Centre website.

Valentine date at the gallery

Recently I was asked to sketch a couple at the Scottish National Gallery to help promote their Valentines competition.

When I was younger I remember going on a few dates to galleries, often when I was meant to be somewhere else the local gallery would be a warm and dry place to go too, full of inspiration and wonder.

Just this week I was asked to sketch a few quick watercolour paintings within the red walls of the gallery by the Mound and it was an honour to have the place to myself and to be sketching in front of such stunning works of art.

Below are a couple of other sketches I made on the night. Thanks to Howard and Kenneth for being our perfect models!

Follow @Natgalleriessco on Instagram and also the hashtag #ScotlandSketches for ore information about the monthly online giveaway.

Charles H Mackie retospective

On Saturday 15th May the City Art Centre reopens with a retrospective of a Scottish artist we should all know about.

First off, it is great news to be seeing that the City Art Centre on Market street is reopening after the lockdowns. Home to historic and modern Scottish painting and photography, as well as contemporary art and craft, the central venue has been greatly missed.

Earlier this week I had the chance to visit their new exhibition about an extremely talented and driven Scottish artist who I hadn’t previously heard of. But I am not alone and Mackie biographer and researcher Pat Clark told me the exhibition is a long-overdue tribute to one of Scotland‚Äôs outstanding and unjustly neglected artists.

The exhibition brings both private and public pieces together and is an exclusive chance to see the artists wide range of work in one place, from small Scottish rural scenes, to large Venetian oil pieces.

Born in Aldershot and brought up in Edinburgh, Mackie traveled and painted around Europe and the UK, creating beautiful art using a wide range of materials including watercolours, wood block printing and oils.

I loved sing the original watercolours along side wood block prints of the same scene. The wood block process reminds me of more illustrative pieces, the colours are strong and bright.

I took my pad and made notes and sketches, just totally loving being in a gallery again and the injection of inspiration that gives me. Welcome back City Art Centre ūüôā

Charles H. Mackie: Colour and Light runs from 15th May 2021 ‚Äď 10th October 2021, at the City Art Centre, 2 Market Street, Edinburgh. Admission is free, but pre booking is essential for the time being. You can do this via the website below:

City Art Centre website

A Human Touch at the Scottish Parliament

This morning I was at The Scottish Parliament for the unveiling of ‘A Human Touch’ – an outdoor photography exhibition showcasing the impact human activity has had on the planet.

As part of The Edinburgh Science Festival this free open air gallery of stunning artwork will be on show until 20th May.

Amazing to see and beautiful in their own right each image tells a story that will make you think about your own impact on the earth. A must see.

Edinburgh Science Festival link

Scottish Parliament website

The Toulouse-Lautrec exhibition at the Scottish National Gallery

Inspired by advertising prints made over 100 years ago.u exhibition at the Scottish National Gallery is inspiring

This is the first exhibition held at the National Galleries of Scotland devoted to the art of Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901). Coming from an advertising background myself I find his work so inspiring, the limited use of colour and striking imagery which captured the imagination and turned mass produced posters into artwork for many years to come.

Most famous of all are his posters for the nightspots of the bohemian district of Montmartre in Paris, where Toulouse-Lautrec lived, worked and socialised, including the now legendary café-cabarets Le Moulin Rouge and Le Chat Noir.

The exhibition which runs until 20th January 2019 focuses on Toulouse-Lautrec’s lithographic posters, portfolio prints and illustrations which made stars of Montmartre’s venues and their entertainers.

But also we see his portrait sketches in pencil and some of the less known rejected artwork. The exhibition creates a glimpse of the man who, over one hundred years ago created such lovely sketches from rehearsals or back stage including the acts, the orchestra and the crowd.

I’m looking forward to doing more of that myself in the summer.

The sketch was made with fine liner ink pens and a watercolour set and brush. PS I added the writing on the walls ūüėČ

For more information and to book see the National Galleries Scotland website here. 

Victoria Sponge Sunday

VictoriaSpongeIt looks a lovely Sunday out there but if the showers do¬†return there’s no better place to take cover¬†than the Modern Art Gallery.

Just fifteen minutes walk from Princes Street through Edinburgh’s stunning west end the gallery is easily accessible and a great place to have lunch or afternoon coffee and cake, surrounded by interesting and thought provoking art work.

I stopped by recently, and was delighted to find this gluten free victoria sponge in the Cafe Modern One.

This sketch was drawn in black ink with a watercolour wash.


Scottish National Gallery Of Modern Art website

Scottish tour for this mobile art gallery

ArtBusI spotted this bus beside the City Art Centre, on Market Street. Preparing to leave on a tour of Scotland, ‘The Travelling Gallery’ will be available in Edinburgh until Friday, 30th August.


Parked in a space which made me think it must of been lowered in by helicopter (well done driver!), the bus is a custom-built, contemporary art space. Inspired by the Year of Natural Scotland, the Travelling Gallery’s autumn exhibition presents an alternative view of the Scottish landscape, through works by artists with a diverse range of practices.

Supported by Creative Scotland, the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and the City of Edinburgh Council, the Travelling Gallery brings art to schools and communities throughout Scotland.


The dates in Edinburgh and then further afield are below. Do try and catch the show when it passes by, it is both thought provoking and beautiful.



Fri 23 Aug: City Art Centre, 2 Market Street, 11am – 6pm

Sat 24 Aug: City Art Centre, 2 Market Street, 11am – 6pm

Tue 27 Aug: Hawes Promenade, South Queensferry, 11am – 5pm

Wed 28 Aug: Festival Square, Lothian Road, 11am – 5pm

Thur 29 Aug: Drylaw Neighbourhood Centre,67b Groathill Road North, 2pm Р5pm

Fri 30 Aug: High Street, Portobello (Outside Bank of Scotland), 11am Р5pm



2-13 Sept: Highlands

16-20 Sept: Lewis and Harris

23-24 Sept: Uists

28 Sept-3 Oct: Shetland

7-11 Oct: Perth & Kinross

21-25 Oct: Renfrewshire

28 Oct-8 Nov: ‚Äď South Ayrshire

11-15 Nov: Midlothian

18-22 Nov: Renfrewshire

25-29 Nov: Edinburgh

3-7 Dec: Angus

10 Dec: West Lothian

For more information about The Travelling Gallery visit their website HERE.


Foodies at Holyrood gallery

30th January  The Foodies at Holyrood cafe near the Scottish Parliament are currently hanging EdinburghSketcher artwork in their gallery space.


For the next two months they have kindly agreed to hang my work in their cafe. I have a mixture of prints and original sketches on sale, in various sizes and at a range of prices. All artwork is framed and available to buy straight off the wall. The gallery will keep changing as I will replace each sold piece with a new different sketch.


Pop in and pick up a piece of original Edinburgh art, and stay for a while. They serve delicious baked potatoes, soups and sandwiches along with great coffee.


For directions (the cafe is on Holyrood road) and more information about their  menu and facilities see their website HERE.