Feeling artistic in Edinburgh

Blogging on my phone on the fast train from Edinburgh to London. The view from the window: rainclouds looming over rapeseed fields.

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I’m leaving Edinburgh after five days, which feels way too soon – I was just starting to get my bearings and discover all the good things to see. (Admittedly I spent a fair few hours sleeping, relishing family gossip, eating neeps and tatties and watching romantic comedies and a Bee-Gees special with my Auntie Margaret, which frankly was time well spent).

I love the shops selling beautiful handmade and locally designed things (yes, I am a shameless shopper when I travel); the museums and art galleries; the millions of charity shops (opp shops); the parks where I thought I was going to be wiped out by flying golf balls; and the city skyline which is stunning from every angle. I didn’t have enough time to do more than skim the surface of any of these things. But what I saw was wonderful.

I was inspired by lots of Scottish artists, including Elizabeth Blackadder, especially her stylized still lifes:

I stayed in the upmarket suburb of Morningside (which my cousin says you have to pronounce with an ironically posh Edinburgh accent to show you’re “in the know”) where I pottered around commercial galleries and shops full of genuinely gorgeous stuff. (Also lots of opp shops with an unusually high number of fancy hats.) After visiting Acanthus, an interior design shop, I felt an overwhelming desire to paint my house in dark elegant tones and fill it with plants, wood, black bamboo, Asian ceramics and eclectic curios like the inside of a Victorian cabinet of curiosities.

I’m continuing to doodle in my new sketch book (I bought a bigger book and a better pen after my first attempt).

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