It’s almost two years since I began the whisky label marathon where I drew over 400 individual sketches of places in Scotland for Sansibar-Whisky’s bottling of a really tasty 1976 Speyside malt. Every sketch was of a place that I had been to and from photos that I had taken.
A year later and the bottles were on display in Finest Whisky, Berlin.
Having drawn labels from Dumfries to Sutherland I can’t tell you how proud I was when I saw that one of the Lanark images was chosen to be on display – Lanark being my new home town!
Quite a few sketches were made of places close to home here in the Clyde Valley. Recently, I supplied the Post Office in Crossford with a small selection of greetings cards of some of the places on labels within walking distance of home.
I thought I would share some of the sketches of the places nearby starting with Hazelbank, named after all the Hazel trees that once grew along the banks of the River Clyde. Most of the hazels have been cleared over the years but a few healthy hazel saplings are growing in our orchard and hopefully they will thrive.
To read a little bit more about how these labels began – I wrote about it here.
The following images are all places that have become familiar to me, especially Broomhouse the one below, which is really ‘Bill’s House’ which I see every morning from our place a bit further up the hill.
Hope you enjoy this small taste of the Clyde Valley and know that every label that went on those 1976 Speysiders was drawn with the same level of dedication that went into making the whisky!
The best thing about our new home here in Scotland, is stepping outside our back door. From here, the rush of the mighty River Clyde is carried up the sides of the valley where it never fails to take my breath away, make me stop whatever I’m doing and drink in the landscape of the Clyde Valley.
We overlook the old apple, plum and damson orchards of Hazelbank and beyond towards Crossford, where as the name suggests, there is a bridge over the Clyde. When we moved here it was peak growth season, with mostly rooftops, cables and crows visible above the dense foliage.
The greenery has all died back now and as we get closer to the year end, I just wanted to wish you all a very happy Christmas and give you a flavour of some streets I plan to draw as next year unfolds.
Before I got stuck into my whisky label project (see previous post), I made a start on a few sketches of places close to our home in Hazelbank, to help anchor me into my new surroundings.
Our nearest town is Lanark, a place full of history which I am looking forward to learning about as my new street drawings come to life.
Much as I love this time of year, it can be very stressful for all sorts of reasons and I hope that whatever you are doing and wherever you are, you can take a few minutes to enjoy some of the beauty of the season.
I’d like to sign off by saying a sincere thank you for bearing with me during this year of our big move and wish you all the best for 2019. Thanks for reading! Ronnie