Just before the first COVID-19 lockdown, we took ownership of a 7-year-old Border Terrier called Stanley. As we entered lockdown, my daily walks with Stanley into the Pentland Hills became an essential activity of body and mind. The Pentland Hills are a stone’s throw from our house and week-by-week we got more ambitious on which routes to take and how high to climb and meander.

In early summer 2020, I decided to record our daily walks as part of the national 100 Days Project, designed to encourage anyone to do something creative each day.

My brief to myself was this;

  • Prepare 100 sheets of A5 paper with random painted acrylic washes
  • Each morning –  make one small ten-minute drawing in pencil directly from a location on the walk on the prepared paper.
  • Each afternoon, (usually after studio painting session) use whatever mixed oil colours I had left over on my palette and use them to paint from memory over the drawing.

There was no plan to include Stanley in the studies – he was always very content to sit and look out while I did my drawing – but eventually worked his way into the pictures.

The 100 works are due to be shown at the Open Eye Gallery at some point in 2021. Dates to be confirmed.