Sunday, March 30, 2014

Writer in her natural habitat

I seem to be irresistibly drawn to ruins! You'd think I'd have learnt my lesson after the Hallowe'en shenanigans...but seemingly not. 

This week I was part of a very interesting project by photographer Brian O'Neill, of Crieff Photography. Brian is taking a series of portrait shots of people from Crieff - ranging from the guy who works in the whisky shop to the lollipop lady to local artist June McEwan. You can see some of them on Crieff Photography's website, here:

Brian has also been posting these photos on Crieff Photography's Facebook page, which is where I saw the one of Alan from J.L.Gill the whisky shop in Crieff. I admired that particular portrait very much as it seemed to me to embody the difference between taking a technically good photograph (which is getting easier and easier with digital camera technology) and creating a real portrait.

Perhaps it was my effusion of admiration which prompted Brian to ask me if I would like to be featured too! I was absolutely thrilled at the suggestion but felt a wee bit guilty because unlike most of the other subjects, I haven't lived in Crieff for very long: only since 2011, in fact, when we moved over from Belgium in an epic seventeen-hour car journey from which my lower back has barely recovered. However, luckily for me, Brian didn't mind this. I'm still a resident of Crieff after all! So we had a chat about where to do the photograph and I came up with...Saint Kessog's, the ruined church near Auchterarder.

You'd think I'd have had enough of the place after being stuck there for hours in the rainy dark last time, but no; it still seemed like the perfect setting. I love poking about in old ruins and this one is a bit special. The east end, which was later converted into a mausoleum, is still fairly complete, with a skeleton metal roof and all the walls intact. Trees have grown up through the floor and creepers hang down from the ceiling. In the kirkyard, mossy gravestones abound and there is also a creepy-looking mausoleum. And it was in front of that mausoleum that Brian took the photograph you can see below.
A writer in her natural habitat, you might say.


  1. Fantastic pics of a lady who has already made her mark in Crieff by bringing attention to some of our local historic sights

  2. Thanks June! Ruined churches covered with spooky you would say, what's not to like?! :-)