I am a filmmaker and artist based in Edinburgh, originally from Assynt, in North West Sutherland. I was born in Africa but my Scottish parents (father Willie from Whalsay,Shetland and mother Joan from Lochinver) returned to Assynt, Scotland when I was two. I was brought up in a stunningly beautiful part of the world with iconic mountains such as Suilven (in a lot of my paintings) and also in a house filled with African artifacts. Although Gaelic wasn't spoken (apart from the occasional phrase), it was sung all the time (my mother, her sister Marlene and husband Kenny MacKenzie were always singing) and I was immersed in the culture of Gaelic song, folk music and Highland tales of The Brahan Seer.
Marlene taught me how to paint with oils when I was around four or five. While working in my parent's fishing business I learned to make creels and to weld, which later on helped when I began to make sculptures. These influences can be seen in my video work and in some of my paintings.
I made the series of TV Hen paintings and animations based on a Gaelic poem which was taught by my Great Aunt Seordag Murray to children entering the Mod (Gaelic festival). Hence the hen is called Seordag. I then embarked on a fusion of sculpture and video which I called videosculpture where I created a robot hen animation called Cearc Agus Ubh (Chicken and Egg).
In the early 90's after working on backgrounds for Gaelic TV series Uruisg Na H'Alba (The Scottish Brownies)I went to Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and transferred my traditional animation skills to digital and then created interactive work such as Dolly the Sheep (for Inverness Gallery and Museum) and Tasseomancer (a tea leaf reading bit of fun for mobile phones).
In 2009 I did the MA Screenwriting at Screen Academy Scotland and went on to produce feature films. The latest is Baobhan Sith.
Over the past few years I developed a new style which I called Deadgirls & Beardyboys. The paintings were very stylised and the common theme was black space instead of eyes. This year (2016) I did a fusion painting of the Deadgirls and TV Hen called Birdfeeders. Since then I've been busy making new Birdfeeder paintings and will have an exhibition in 2017.