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Contemporary Scottish thistle art

Scottish Thistles

As the old saying goes, a picture can paint 1,000 words. But such is the passion and emotion stirred by the humble Scottish thistle, we'd better make that 5,000 words. Do you know how the humble but not so dainty thistle come to be a worldwide emblem of Scotland? For full chapter, verse and infographic on [...]
frozen Tunnocks tea cake

The Epic Frozen Tunnock’s Teacake

George, a bartender from Maryhill, shared this chilling story with me recently. Who'd have thought to freeze a Tunnock's Tea Cake? But I promise you, its well worth exploring. The original and best summer treat. Buy it. Keep your tea cake in its wrapper; if it's already a bit battered, even better... Squish it. A [...]

4 of the Best Known Robert Burns Poems and Songs

My tribute to Robert Burns' immortal memory ahead of Burns Night on January 25th is a wee set of illustrations of 4 of the best known Robert Burns poems and songs. I pulled out the 2 lines which, in my opinion, best summed up each of these poems or songs and got to work capturing [...]
Irn Bru merchandise range

Pop meets Pop! The story behind my new IRN-BRU gift range

Last week we launched our brand new, officially licensed IRN-BRU gift range; an homage to the classic, vintage IRN-BRU bottle and the vibrant simplicity of the 60’s pop-art movement. A long time in development, this range has been tons of fun to work on and I’m very proud of the results. The reaction from my [...]

20 Interesting Facts about Puffins

Thank you for checking in to read my latest illustrated Scottish Story: interesting facts about puffins. I’ve always been intrigued by puffins: they are such wonderfully charismatic and colourful little creatures with an almost unmatched ability to conquer land, sea and air. With many colonies dotted around the more remote pockets of the Scottish shoreline, [...]
animation celebrating the V&A Dundee and Maggie's Penguin Parade

The V&A and Penguins Come to Dundee

Bonnie Dundee 2018 - now we really do have something to sing about For me, Dundee will be forever associated with Oor Wullie and The Beano, but these days its no longer just the city of "jute, jam and journalism". In fact, in 2014, the wee city on the Tay was recognised by the United Nations (no [...]
Charles Rennie Mackintosh Glasgow School of Art and font design tea towel celebrating the Scottish artist, designer and architect on his 150th birthday by Gillian Kyle

A sad day for Glasgow…

Only one week ago we were celebrating Charles Rennie Mackintosh at 150. Today, after a terrible fire that broke out late last night, CRM’s central Glasgow architectural masterpiece, the Mackintosh Building at the Glasgow School of Art, is a burnt out, smoldering shell. It was little over 4 years ago that the Mack – as all students of the GSA […]

Famous Scots - Scottish architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh and Glasgow School of Art infographic illustrated story with interesting facts by Scottish artist Gillian Kyle

Charles Rennie Mackintosh at 150

In 2016 Charles Rennie Mackintosh was voted #2 Great Scot* in a poll conducted by the National Trust for Scotland. But how how much do we really know about this clearly much loved and iconic Scottish designer? (br) On the eve of his 150th birthday on June 7th, I set out to find out more about […]

Scotties and Westies

In Scotland things tend to happen in pairs: • highlands & lowlands • kilts & bagpipes • haggis & neeps • Clyde & Forth • Robert Burns & Sir Walter Scott • teacakes & caramel wafers • Scotties & Westies Scotties & Westies, or more formally Scottish Terriers and West Highland Terriers, are two Scottish [...]
Gillian Kyle's illustrated guide to throwing the perfect Burns Night celebration and Burns Supper

Throwing a Burns Supper at Home

Planning a home-based Burns Supper for friends and family should be simple, easy and FUN! When organising Burns Suppers in the past I've made them overly complicated or too formal - which only results in making the night more stressful than enjoyable. Definitely not how Rabbie would have wanted it! Last year we had 8 [...]
Tunnock's Christmas Tree Infographic by Gillian Kyle

Dreaming of a red and white Christmas; a Scottish story

This Christmas, on the eve of my wee Scottish design company’s 10th year in business (can’t quite believe it), I am decking out a special Christmas tree in festive red and white. This has been inspired not by the Coca Cola red and white as worn by Santa but by the iconic red and white […]

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