Tag Archives: crossing

Under the bridges on the Firth of Forth with Inner Forth Landscape Initiative

IFLI_BlacknessCastleLast week I ran a painting and sketching activity on a boat trip along the Firth of Forth with the Inner Forth Landscape Initiative.

The IFLI is a Heritage Lottery Funded Landscape Partnership Scheme which focuses on the upper Firth of Forth area. A beautiful and often overlooked part of the country home to a wide range of wildlife and plant life.



I had visited the area with IFLI  on land for a sktch trip to the stunning hidden world of Kennetpans Distillery, but that as I said was on land over the Forth Bridge and along the A985 to the Kincardine Bridge.

This time we were to travel under the Kincardine Bridge on the Maid of the Forth passenger boat, which regularly ferrys people over to the island of Inchcolm.

Around ninety people boarded at South Queensferry and we headed west under the road bridge and almost finished (the multiple sections of road are almost touching) South Queensferry Crossing. It was amazing to see these huge structures from a new angle, the stormy reddening sky behind made the view unforgettable.

We passed by various interesting sites like Rosyth Dockyard with its tenant aircraft carriers, the smoke and flame bellowing from Grangemouth contrasted well with the ghostly, now unused Longannet Power Station. As we passed by each experts took turns on the microphone to tell us about each location.

I had given out pen and paper for passengers to try and capture the sites as we floated by, and below are some of the great sketches people created.


On the lower deck I set up a watercolouring table where paint could be added to sketches drawn or visitors had the option of colouring some pre drawn line drawings. Below is a selection of those created.


There was a great atmosphere on board and I thank all those who took part and got into the sketching spirit. It was facinating to see an area I thought I knew from a completely new perspective so thank you to IFLI for providing such a trip. Have a look at the links below for similar events in the future, and remember to take your sketchbook!

Below are a few more of my sketches from the trip, click on each to see a larger version.

IFLI_BoatFlag IFLI_Grangemouth IFLI_LonganantPowerStation IFLI_Watching IFLI_KincardineBridge IFLI_Limekilns

Inner Forth Landscape Initiative website

Maid of the Forth website

The Queensferry Crossing is taking shape across the Firth of Forth.

QueensferryCrossing_BeingBuiltToday I was at South Queensferry sketching the Forth road bridges, both current and future.

I parked my car at the RNLI car park looking out over the Forth in between the road bridge and the rail bridge. I’m always looking for new angles and I spotted this angle of the new bridge being built, behind the current road bridge, and all framed in a section of the iron railing in front of the car.

Sketching on location.

The sketch shows one of the three towers of the new ‘Queensferry Crossing’, with cables stretching out on either side. I look forward to returning once the road bridge is complete, it looks pretty impressive so far.

Sketch drawn in an A4 heavy weight watercolour pad, with a 0.5 fineliner pen and a watercolour wash over the top.

This original ink and watercolour sketch measures 290x200mm and is available to buy for £165. Prints can be purchased at £18 for 150x100mm or £32 for 290x200mm. Email me to order.

Forth Bridges website