Safe in the Open (2019)

The ‘Safe in the Open’ series was shown with Circus Artspace, an artist-run gallery in Inverness which I was a co-founder of. In this group drawing show ‘rock-paper-scissors’, each artist responded to Scotland’s flaura, fauna and geology in their own way.

My series of pencil drawings were based on the native wildflowers found growing in my garden in Inverness. These included wild poppies, daisies and grasses. Working with graph paper as a geometric foundation to draw on, I observed the plants externally and internally and I drew what I saw and sensed of them. I worked directly with the living plants.

In researching some of the Scots words for these wildflowers, I discovered that they were collectively known as ‘gowan’ and the saying ‘to hae the gowan under yer feet’ is to be safe on the open. A beautiful sentiment, it inspired the name of this collection.