Ailleagan Art (‘Little treasure’ in Scots Gaelic)

Updated: Nov 16, 2020

Why did you choose to be an artist/designer?

I love creating, being free to try new things and I love working for myself. I’ve always enjoyed drawing and painting and my business has allowed me the freedom to be creative every day.

What medium do you work in? Mixed media painting, mainly acrylic on board and canvas. What's your background, have you always been an artist/designer?

I have always wanted to use my art in my work, but It has taken several years to build up my business to the point where it is my full time 'job'. I feel very fortunate that these opportunities have opened up for me, but it's been a bit of a journey with lots of twists and turns on the way!

How has your practice changed over time? At the start I sold some paintings and made a few pieces of jewellery. Over the last 2-3 years my use of my artwork and images has developed a lot and i have been able to use my prints to make jewellery, cards etc. This has also allowed me to grow a range of handmade jewellery and gifts, giving people more choice and a sense of connection to my work as an artist and the places I am inspired by.

How and when did you start creating? I have always loved creating and trying new things, I don't remember I time when I didn't enjoy it!

How would you describe your creations? I would describe myself as a mixed media artist, painting ‘slightly abstract’ emotive Scottish landscapes & seascapes

What inspires you? My rural surroundings, I live up near the Trossachs and I love the scenery here. I also love Scottish islands and my visits there are a big influence in my work. Endless inspiration.

Where do you show / sell your art? Online, I have Instagram and Facebook pages, an etsy shop, I also stock two other shops in addition to SDX Edinburgh, Made in Stirling (Stirling) and The Janet & John shop (Glasgow). In am also involved in ‘The Fintry Art Collective’ - a small group of local artists, we try to collaborate and put on a couple of exhibitions locally every year

Do you think art can have an impact in the local community? Yes definitely, it can bring people together and give them common ground. It's a great way to collaborate with other people. I have seen it can also give people a sense of pride and identity and belonging to something or somewhere.

Who are your biggest influences? Probably Scottish artists Joan Eardly and Ann Redpath. I love their vivid expressive styles and how they captured the places they painted.

Which current art do you think is having an impact in the world right now? Art is a universal language which transcends borders. You can communicate powerfully with an image, often more than many words. It allows you to see the world through someone else's eyes which is always interesting, if you keep looking you'll never stop learning.

What difference has working with SDX made to your business? SDX has been a supportive network and has enabled me to start to sell my work through the shop in Edinburgh. I admire their community work and how they support artists and makers on the journey to make a living from their creative endeavours

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