The idea of finding a new studio started around 2018, as I began to feel that I had outgrown my previous space. I had left a huge studio Glasgow and ended up in the attic of a converted stone barn, meaning that in the winter months it was often a wee bit chilly. As I was in the coombed ceiling space there wasn’t a lot of wall space to consider the paintings. And the bigger commissions were painted outside. On top of this it had also become quite cramped and the lighting wasn’t adequate for the work I was doing. So the search started for a new studio. This sent me all across central Scotland, from an old blacksmiths workshop in Kinross to a workshop hidden behind a terrace in Dollar and to many other weird and wonderful places. None of them seemed to be a good fit (or the owners wanted far too much money)
I needed a space with good light, that was reasonably warm, with plenty of wall space to consider my work. I wanted it to be good enough to present work to private clients and big enough to teach in. I also wanted it to be able to handle the larger canvases that I was beginning to have in mind after doing the Tam o’Shanter paintings.
I decided the answer would be to build the studio in the field by my house. I took some inspiration form the best studios in the world, the first floor painting studios in Glasgow School of Art, Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s great masterpiece.