Illustrators invade Oban

Cheerful faces all around, in spite of almost arctic conditions - photo by Lucas Clauser
Cheerful faces all around, in spite of near Arctic conditions – photo by Lucas Clauser

The annual Illustration trip to Oban is quickly becoming a beloved tradition, and this year our illustrators were joined by a number of Graphic Design and Animation students on their quest to draw, explore and develop their work while breaking out of their daily routines.

Setting off from Waverley Station on a Thursday morning, we arrived in Oban just in time to see the sun dip into the sea (rather spectacularly so) and got a first taste of the short northern Winter days. The good weather was to last, and even though temperatures remained around freezing point, our time in the Highlands was marked by bright weather and, unusual for Scotland, very little wind. We stayed in Oban’s Youth Hostel, which is right by the sea and made a great base camp for the following days.

Perfect drawing conditions – photo by Jo-fan Liao

On Friday Astrid began our stay handing out maps and sketchbooks, and sent each student off to draw and document a different location in and around Oban. Each of them returned with cold fingers, a diverse range of drawings and evidence of where they had been, and a starting point for further exploration of the area.

Saturday students were free to take their drawing further in a location of their own choice, with the majority catching the ferry to Mull and set off for Tobermory, Salen or Duart Castle and making the most of the stunning weather outdoors. The conditions for drawing were great, with warming sunshine and lack of wind, and nobody lost any fingers in the cold.

Duart Castle on Mull - can you spot the illustrators in the distance?
Duart Castle on Mull – can you spot the illustrators in the distance?

Sunday, our last day in the area, saw most students explore the the town and its immediate surroundings further, with some walking to the hills and forests and others heading for the local cafes to shelter from the cold. By 6pm everyone had made it onto the southbound train, which took 21 weary but happy students back home to Edinburgh.

An exhibition showcasing drawings from our Oban trip will be coming to the Andrew Grant Gallery soon, drop by to see some great work!

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