Tuesday, October 20, 2009
"Ciamar a tha sibh?" Scottish Gaelic for hello or how are you.
The Artwork in this series is dedicated to all Scottish people everywhere and anyone who wishes to be or enjoys the traditions.
First of all some years back I was asked to do a large oil painting of the "Royal and Ancient," of Scotland for the Golf course Royal Lakes as a tribute to where golf all started. (Bottom Painting seen here)
With my Dad's love of Golf, I realized this is where it all started.
Little did I know at the time how my own connections were about to play out. You see, both of my major surnames are very Scottish, just one happens to be more literally connected to, but not only, the land. I had heard my Grandmother years ago say, "we are Scottish," and at the time thought nothing of it because my own interest and I was not mature enough I guess you might say.
With the past behind us, praise be to God, I have wanted to understand more where those in my family before me came from, and how this fits into me being an artist. I can still recall listening to family stories as a child visualizing what it may have been like in those days.
So the journey began to unfold. As you may see on my site and the blog here, my wife and I enjoyed our trips to Cumberland Island which became a great inspiration for my art. As I began to study the Carnegie family and the commission of the Royal and Ancient was finished, I started have more questions about my own lineage?
Intensely studying my maternal family was made somewhat easy by some family members who had compiled a book about the family.
In general, the Scottish surname dates back hundreds and possibly over a thousand years. For 5 centuries the Earls of Ross and their families lived in the Balnagown Castle you see above (top painting) that became a good subject for one of my first in the long series of Scottish oil paintings I am working on.
With my artistic license, I placed the river on this side of the Castle for the viewer to be able to see better and to have a great place for the flowers and rocks with moss.
There had to be the juniper which is a representation for the Clan Ross badge and of course what would it be without the beautiful heather along side. The bright blue sky and white clouds are symbolic for the Saltire as you will also notice flying atop the castle with the Ross tartan.
On the big tree to the right is carved on it's truck, Soli- Deo-Gloria, (to God be the Glory), which in the actual Castle is carved over one of the mantle's. Much thought, heart, and time went into creating this oil painting for all the Ross generations before and currently living and for anyone who just enjoys the beauty of Scotland and it's Castles.
The current Chief of Clan Ross is David Ross of Ross and Balnagown. He is a descendant of Ronald Ross who was a surgeon discovering the cause of Malaria, winning the Noble prize for such and also enjoyed doing some painting.
There is so much more to this "clan" and all it's connected families. That is exactly one of the points I will be making in my upcoming new book.
The Original of the Castle is currently not for sale yet to request to receive a limited canvas reproduction contact the artist directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
All the Best,
Christopher Paul Simpson
Chi mi a dh'aithghearr sibh." (Scottish Gaelic for See you Soon).