A couple of weeks ago, Jeremy and I made a last minute decision to spend Thanksgiving weekend exploring the the Isle of Skye and the Highlands. Ideally, we would have rented a car and meandered the countryside on our own. But, we only had 3 days and both of us are more than a little nervous to drive on the other side of the road - so we booked a tour instead!
The Scottish Highlands are truly magnificent; probably some of the most beautiful landscape I've ever seen. It reminded me a lot of Cape Breton, where I grew up. The countryside is so vast and the colours are so saturated, even in foggy or blistery weather (which we had quite a bit of). We could have spent WAY more time exploring the cool spots in the area. Another trip is definitely in order.
One of the nice things about an organized tour is the context it provides. I have a little knowledge about Scottish history, but our guide was a great storyteller and I learned SO MUCH about this beautiful part of the world. On our first day we visited Culloden Battlefield (...Outlander, anyone?), and that really set the stage for the rest of our time in the highlands and understanding the hardship the Highlands faced and the resiliency of the Scottish people.
I REALLY wanted to do some painting on-site while we were exploring, but the nature of a tour and the weather didn't really allow for it. I did however come back to Edinburgh super excited to paint! I'm working on a series of pieces inspired by our time in the Highlands. They're not based so much on the specific landscapes we saw, but more so how they made me feel. The photos I took are quite moody and dark, but my paintings are working out to be quite colourful and bright! I'm aiming for an early November release date. :)