June 09, 2022
Our gallery and artists have an enduring connection to the park and it is a constant source of inspiration to many artists and writers throughout history. A perfect place to breathe slowly and take in the beauty of nature, the Park has been a favourite painting spot of Howard Butterworth throughout his career as an artist. In 1976 Howard settled with his family in Glen Muick, Ballater, situated in the heart of the park and on the doorstep of Lochnagar and Loch Muick. He set up his easel and began to capture the beauty of the landscape in oil paint - inspired by its panoramic views, changing moods and skies For over 45 years Howard himself has been a feature of the cairngorms, visitors have often come across him or spotted him painting "En Plein Air" with his easel in the landscape. He could be found out on the hills, or by the riverside painting in all elements or occasionally using his car as a mobile studio. A regular sight in the areas around Braemar and the Invercauld Estate. Loch Muick and the Balmoral Estate these areas are some of the subjects of Howards most beloved and well known artworks.
The iconic mountain Lochnagar has been a frequent subject of Howard’s, it’s snow capped peaks make it a perfect backdrop to many of his Royal Deeside paintings, along with the crystal waters of the famous River Dee or it’s rushing tributaries that naturally flow & join the Dee on it's 87 mile journey to the North Sea.
Promoting, conserving and protecting the park and its rivers is something Howard feels passionate about. Howard has worked closely with The River Dee Trust which was set up to protect the Dee as an invaluable resource for us and future generations. Read more about their work here on the Million Trees project. Nearly half of the land within the National Park is considered ‘wild land’ and is of international importance for nature, protected by European Law. With 19 Areas of Conservation, 12 Special Protection Areas and 46 Sites of Special Scientific Interest, it is easy to understand why the region's communities proudly strive to protect its flora & fauna - check out the recent Capercaillie Project here.
Every day in the park is a different experience with the changing seasons and light, weather and moods constantly shifting. Howards style of emotional realism attempts to convey this particular feeling at a particular place and time. Over the years he has captured the park in its many different guises, from the first fresh glimpses of spring to summers vibrant colours and heather clad mountains to winters frozen waters and silent snow covered glens.
The park's 90 miles of "Snow Roads" cover parts of Aberdeenshire, Moray, Highlands, Angus and Perth and Kinross. Howard knows these roads, bends and rocks like the back of his hand, with many many miles travelled to panoramic breathtaking view points and picturesque villages.
There are hundreds of activities, footpaths, trails and walks to suit all levels looking for a stunning wander to go get inspired by the park and all it has to offer...Breathe deep, take in the fresh air and be moved by this wonderful place!
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November 05, 2023
Our range of original artwork, prints and greetings cards of Aberdeenshire can make ideal Christmas gifts for those looking to give friends and family a unique piece of Scottish art.