Thursday, November 19, 2009

10 years of Painting from Scottish Contemporary Landscape Artist Scott Naismith

New 120 page Book spanning 10 years of Scottish landscape painting is out now, just in time for a perfect Christmas gift. Includes guest writing from Richard Sunderland.
Preview a small selection of these pages here:

Monday, November 09, 2009

Magazine Cover

A feature on my work is happening all this week on This Magazine accompanies the Solo Exhibition group and has some great writing from Richard Sutherland. Here's one of the articles:

A View to Eigg and Rhum
by Scott Naismith
oil on canvas

In Scott Naismith’s “A View to Eigg and Rhum”, the sunset glances off the flat sea, while a gently swell undulates towards us. The cottage is small, special, and isolate. Like a full stop, it allows us to pause and gasp at the moment. This painting is a striking example of Scott Naismith’s work. He is a master at manipulating our perception of colour. Every aspect of the canvas, every tonal shape that makes the composition is broken down.

We see orange and blue, red and green, and black and white; except there is not a constant saturation of colour. Every shape of colour oscillates through a change; their luminosity is phenomenal. Each colour and shape has a purpose and a contrasting partner. Naismith cleverly changes the planar direction and creates a wall of water, showing the light filtering down to the darker depth. This under-current pushes and compresses the pictorial elements of the distant Eigg and Rhum and the white-wall cottage on the spur of land.
This whole middle area is trapped between the vastness of the sky and the depths of the ocean. The sea is calm; but the wind is blowing the high clouds quickly across the scene. Hans Hoffmann would see it has having “push and pull”. The planar recession is dramatic. You are taken right to the source of light by the sea’s zig-zag. But this device works both ways: the foreground reaches up out of the depth, catching the last strands of light. And, in a fusion of brush strokes, pulls the light back toward us. So we can stand with Scott and enjoy the vista.
The west coast of Scotland can vary from being almost Mediterranean to strong, North Atlantic, and wild. This contrast of mood and atmosphere comes out in Scott’s work; sometimes frantic and spontaneous; at other times, calm and sedate. Like all landscape painters who have a passion to be outdoors in their environment, recording is done at a pace, so as not to miss the moment. His constant traveling has developed a keen eye for the landscape and subtle changes he encounters— time of day, weather, a crofters cottage, a whiskey making company, or wild flowers against a vast sky. He is more Fauve than Matisse. Bold analogues, colours accented against their complimentary partners, burst with vibrant effects; sometimes in lush, bulging paint strokes. The impasto has to be taken into account— it changes the tonality of the colour, it accents and creates form. This isn’t instinct; it is purpose and clarity of vision, and response to what he has seen, contriving to create awesome plays of light. Each hue is carefully matched to maximize its expressive form and function within the painting.
—Richard Sunderland

Download the full pdf of magazine:

Friday, November 06, 2009


Did this Interview after winning a challenge in a Scottish based RedBubble Group.

1. Firstly, tell us more about your winning image and why it was this one that inspired you to enter it for the challenge?
The winning Image is a 40×40 cm painting of Sanna Bay, Ardnamurchan. Looking North out to the isles of Rum, Eigg and Muck (just below Rum). The Challenge was titled “A perfect green and blue Scottish summer”. While most would be thinking grass/trees/vegetation for green, I was thinking of the greens and Blues of the turquoise waters around the West coast. On a perfect summer day the sun really lights up the white sand and contrasts the black rock, both setting off the magnificent colours of the water.

2. Everyone can see your RB profile, but tell us a bit more about Scott Naismith and his art?
In the nine years I have been a full time artist my style has evolved year on year. More recently my work has taken on more abstract qualities, as I have started to make my work more about the processes/application/colour statements etc and less about the places themselves.

3. How did you start your artistic journey and what inspires to continue?
My artistic journey began when old enough to hold a crayon. All through School I was encouraged by the response I got from others which encouraged me to go to art school in Dundee. After this, all the encouragement and acknowledgement received was now in the form of people spending their hard earned money to own one of my paintings, which is the biggest reward as an artist. Without buyers appreciating what I do, I could not continue doing what I love full time.

4. What do you think is your greatest accomplishment as an artist to date?
My greatest accomplishment to date may have been my representation at the Royal Institute of Oil Painters (ROI) in the Mall Galleries, London last year. The accomplishment which may have been the most significant in moulding my career would be getting a solo exhibition at Ian Kenny Gallery the year I left Duncan of Jordanstone School of art. Another great achievement was the purchase and displaying of 72 original paintings at the Aviemore Highland Resort and Conference Centre.

5. Tell us a bit more about the aspirations and goals for you in the future as an artist?
My daily goal is to make each painting I paint better than the last one, if I can achieve this, all other goals (which frighten me to think about aiming for) will be achievable.

6. As this is group has a wee bit of the Scots about it, what single-most thing do you think of when asked about “Scotland”?
For me it’s the changing Scottish weather and light qualities that it makes possible. I have a great interest in painting skies and, more specifically, transitional skies. As a colourist, how the light changes to expose different colours in the landscape and sky is all important for me. I get so inspired when travelling to the Islands on Calmac ferries. It can be a bit wild out on the deck at times, but that’s where I’ll be the entire six hour to Barra. The changing sky can be seen in all its glory and in all directions from here. The camera can record some of it, but much of my work is done by memory.

7. If there was only one choice of location in Scotland where you could go and visit to capture images or paint a scene, where would this be and why?
If I could pick a whole Island, it would be Skye, its diverse landscape inspires me in new ways every time I return. If it was only one specific location, it would be Arisaig where you get the most spectacular views out to Rum and Eigg from its sandy beaches.

8. Lastly, as this is your time in the “The Scots Are Coming” spotlight, is there any messages (inspirational, gratitude or otherwise) that you would like to share with the group?
I’d just like to say how much I enjoy being part of the RedBubble community. It can be an isolating job at times, painting from my studio at the house. As an artist you don’t really mix with other fellow professionals much and it’s good to be part of something that brings us creative people together in some way. I’m now looking forward to my virtual solo exhibition on the “solo exhibition” group which has a preview on Monday 9th November where you can chat to people who come and see your work in the forum

Thursday, November 05, 2009

2010 Calendars

There's now 3 different calendars to choose from from RedBubble. All are £14.95 +p&p. Bought some to sell at my recent exhibition and all sold out. They look great. A3 size, ring bound with hanger and plenty space to write in. Makes an ideal Christmas gift. Takes a wee while for delivery, so order soon.