It’s always a big highlight of my European trip to spend some time with family and (church) friends on the Isle of Lewis and this year I had over two weeks.
I spent most of my days working in a lovely AirBnB house and then in the afternoon I would hang out with my sister and the children – my niece 6.5 years old and my nephew 2.5 years old.
My AirBnB had a great view and I loved watching the weather – even on wet days. The long evenings were gorgeous.
On the last weekend, my great friend Esther Semmens came over from Edinburgh. She had never visited the island before so I had fun showing her around.
I sketched a far amount despite the 6-8 hours of work I did most days and I really enjoyed doing a lot of landscapes. I have a lot of images to share (as always) so let’s get going.
Around Stornoway – the main (only) town on the Isle of Lewis.
Iconic blue shop in town.
First cafe visit of the trip – Artizan
Full spread showing a friendly seal and a fishing boat (before the rain started)
Another visit to Artizan.
After-school fun: climbing trees and then drawing them.
Here is my sketch of the best tree to climb in the backyard.
The owner of my Airbnb found my work online last year and knew that I liked teacups. So she got out her granny’s teacup and pot for me. How special is that? Thanks Ann-Marie!
Trying to sketch Lews Castle between showers.
My sister’s teacup after a lovely afternoon tea with her sweet neighbour.
Tower of the Nicholson Institute
More after-school fun on a sunny day!
Bits and pieces sketching
A nice lunch with my sis at the new Smokehouse
Esther in town – sketching the Town Hall
My version of Stornoway Town Hall
Other areas on Lewis
The famous standing stones at Callanish on a very hot afternoon – it was 27C.
A magnificent broch – Dun Carloway – sketched in 10 minutes.
My yearly visit to the lovely Morven Gallery
A quick end of the day visit to Port of Ness
A morning in Uig included stopping at Cliff Beach for a sketch.
Valtos in Uig – so peaceful.
Part of the stunning view from the new restaurant: Uig Sands
The landscapes of Harris
I went down to Harris three times. Once for the day with my sis and family, and the other two times I stayed overnight with my friends (a minister and his wife) in Leverburgh so I could go to their church on Sunday. This is the view from their house looking south towards North Uist taken on the weekend with the better weather!
A stop at the Machair kitchen for a coffee means sketching the view.
Another version of the best roadside view of Harris Hills.
Another view from the Machair kitchen on my second visit to Harris.
A day at Luskentyre Beach with the family
Flying a kite and feeling as if we have the whole beach to ourselves
My sketch of Luskentyre beach…
… and a few experiments exploring ways to get Scottish hill texture using pigment magic.
Showing Esther around Harris – here is the view of Seaforth Loch – the border between Lewis and Harris.
A quick incomplete sketch of the food cart at the spot.
The next stop was on the highest point as we drove through the Harris Hills. It was too windy to paint outside so this was from the car.
We didn’t make it to Luskentyre but we did stop on the road to it for a few sketches. Looking one way…
… and then the next.
Sketch of ‘the toe’ from Northton.
Sketching two views of Leverburgh.
The view of Leverbrugh which I want to sketch next time (needs to be in the late afternoon in the sun like this).
And my final Scottish sketch was this one done passing through Edinburgh again.
So there you have it! A fantastic (and productive) time on the Isle of Lewis and Harris.