Monday, 14 November 2011

Photoblog: Mulberrys, Marvellous Portals and Muddy Boots

It may be mid November, but the weather in South West Scotland this weekend was perfect for a wander along part of its sunny coastline.  Not far from Cutcloy Cottage is the pretty village of Garlieston, with its lovely rows of two storey, colour washed Georgian houses sitting along the curve of the bay. 

Amazingly, the entire original village was designed in 1760 by Lord Garlieston, heir to the Earl of Galloway, and is built on the edge of his wooded estate which has magnificent gardens, with woodland and shore walks.   Galloway House Gardens


A winding path follows the curve of the shore through the woods to Rigg Bay, where in 1943, the Mulberry Harbours were tested for use in Normandy during the second world war.  My other half thinks this is very interesting! So much so he once took me on holiday to Normandy for Operation Overload!


Looks like somebody started to built a random driftwood bonfire...

There was much climbing and sliding through an enchanted forest and up Sliddery Point when the landscape dramatically changed and opened onto wide fields and cliffs.  

Suddenly over the brow of the hill the magical arch of Cruggleton Castle appeared in the distance.

Apparently there has been a castle here for a very long time and it was once the main home of the Lords of Galloway.  It has been the scene of many a battle over the centuries and was once captured by Robert the Bruce on his mission to free Scotland from English rule.

All that remains today is a solitary, but dramatic archway and several intriguing walled hollows.  High up on the cliffs, it defiantly stands against the sea below like a portal to another world.

With sheer drops on two sides, the views towards the Isle of Whithorn and the Isle of Man are truly magnificent.

And after all that my feet are tired, but happy!

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Yves Saint-Laurent said "When I discovered Marrakech, it was an extraordinary shock. The city taught me colour."  I understand this, as my own photography had been shot almost entirely in black and white until I visited the Red City in 2010. Since then I have fallen in love with colour...
"Colour plays a distinct role in shaping the visual culture of a city or country. It is one of the oldest forms of communication known, and we are attracted to it like magpies to a shiny object. Colour is simple and pure". Morocco Modern.

"Majorelle Blue" is a colour dotted all over Marrakech...
It was made famous by French artist Jacques Majorelle who lived in Marrakech in the 1920's and 1930's, where he created a beautiful garden known as Jardin Majorelle.  Plant containers, walls, walkways and fountains in the garden are painted in Majorelle blue and sit amongst a wonderful collection of exotic plants.
Majorelle Gardens later fell into disrepair, but in more recent years has been restored by Yves Saint-Laurent. They are now open to the public and the spot is a relaxing haven away from the hustle and bustle of the Medina. 
In 1946, Winston Churchill met fellow painter Jacques Majorelle during one of his stays at La Mamounia. The politician persuaded the hotel’s management to commission a mural by Majorelle, which you can now see on the lobby ceiling.

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Website Launch

Last week I launched the website for our much loved holiday home Cutcloy Cottage.

Since its launch I've received wonderful comments and feedback about how refreshing the site looks. I'm thrilled with the finished article and want to tell everyone about it!

A big thank you to friends and followers on many social networking sites for sharing the link with their own friends and family.  

Cutcloy Cottage which is located at the Isle of Whithorn in Dumfries and Galloway, South West Scotland has two bedrooms and sleeps 4/5. All images on the website © Laura Hudson Mackay Photography. Do take a look at the website and let me know what you think too.

Cork Commission

Since my last post I've been busy completing a number of photographic commissions, one I thought I'd share with you is a rather large framed black and white photograph of a collection of wine corks. 

Three of the corks in the image were ordered especially for the shoot from New Zealand! The framed image which measures over 3 feet wide was for a 40th birthday surprise for a lucky fellow from his wife.

The lady who ordered the commission saw this framed image (below) bought by Mulberry Street in Glasgow and displayed on their restaurant wall. She liked it so much she ordered her own featuring the three corks from bottles of wine she enjoyed with her husband on their honeymoon! I hope the photograph now hanging in their lovely home gives the couple many years of enjoyment and serves as a wonderful reminder of special times together.

All images © Laura Hudson Mackay Photography


Monday, 28 February 2011

Suburban Souk coming to Sheffield

It's March tomorrow! Where are the weeks going? On the success of our last joint venture, I've been busy planning a second event with Samuel Sparrow. 
Suburban Souk a Moroccan inspired POP-UP SHOP will take place on Monday, 28th March from 7.30pm at the Cross Scythes Pub, Baslow Road, Totley, Sheffield.
Showcasing my recently launched series of Limited Edition photographs THE MARRAKECH COLLECTION, which includes images evoking the bustle of the souks, the secret inner courtyards and the hidden back streets of a thousand and one Arabian nights. There will also be the opportunity to browse and buy Moroccan gifts including, jewellery, slippers, scarves, lanterns and mint tea glasses.
Sparrow and Co will be selling their range of candles, each one hand poured in Scotland using 100% natural wax and the finest fragrance oils and keeping with the Moroccan theme, their Tin Lanterns and Leather Pouffe's  - handmade in  the Souks of Marrakech, will also be available to buy on the night along with many other items from their latest homeware collection.
Who knows what you might leave the Suburban Souk with...Whatever it is, a magical evening is guaranteed and it certainly isn't what you would expect to find on a Monday night on the edge of Totley.

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

The Marrakech Collection added to Hudson Mackay Gallery

For those of you that don't know, I own an art gallery Hudson Mackay Gallery, showcasing artworks by around 60 British artists. We work with a wonderful collection of photographers, painters, sculptors, jewellery designers and illustrators. Over the next few weeks, exciting textile artists and their work will be added to the gallery too!  

The good news as of today is that my recently taken Limited Edition photographs from The Marrakech Collection have been added to the gallery and you can now view and buy them online here
The photographs can be ordered in different sizes to suit your requirements, therefore if the size you are looking for isn't there, please email me. 


Thursday, 3 February 2011

It's all in the detail...

Morocco is fascinating and a photographers paradise. Its landscape and culture have a distinctive beauty which has impressed artists and travellers alike over the ages.  

On my last trip I gathered a small collection of just some of the beautiful details from around the city of Marrakech, including the Saadian Tombs, The Bahia Palace and The Ben Youssef Madrassa.   Skills and Art from hundreds, perhaps thousand of years ago are still being used there today, which makes it fascinating to photograph.  For example, the art of Zillij (the mosaic patterns) with a border of calligraphy is a tradition skill used to build and adorn mosques and palaces and is still used today in new buildings and renovations including private houses, restaurants and hotels.  Here in this collection of images I have sought to capture the wonderful aesthetic of these original details.

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Maison de la photographie, Marrakech

For my 40th birthday in July 2010, my other half took me to Morocco and in the last 6 months we have been back 4 times! We love Morocco so much we have put things in place to buy a Riad in the Marrakech Medina. 

Last week, on our most recent trip we traveled with Samuel and Laura Sparrow and the four of us enjoyed shopping in the souks until our feet were sore, buying incense from the former slave market and joining in the carnival spirit in the Jemaa El Fna, we even had our hands henna-ed in the sunshine.

This trip we found even more great restaurants and enjoyed chocolat chaud on the Terrasse of Cafe de France a little too often. 

After a delicious lunch on the roof terrace at Le Foundouk we visited the Maison de la photographie and having never been before I was keen to see the collection which dates from 1870-1950 in such a special setting and it didn't disappoint. The black and white photography looked stunning deep in the heart of the Marrakech Medina in the backdrop of a traditional Riad with a central courtyard and fountain. Of the photographs on display, some were anonymous and others by some of the first western photographers to ever capture images of the indigenous people of the High Atlas mountains of Morocco, the Berbers. The exhibition beautifully illustrated the history, culture, ethnology and daily life of this fascinating country.


From the roof terrace the uninterrupted view across the Medina to the Atlas mountains was a real surprise. Lunch and refreshments are served on the terrace too, but having just eaten, we went straight back to the souks for more shopping.


Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Back to the future

I've just got my hands on a new Polaroid camera. I've wanted one for ages, ever since my Grandad took a picture of me with one when I was nine years old. I remember watching with amazement as the Polaroid paper appeared out of the clunky plastic camera which looked like something from the future, then patiently waiting as the image came to life in front of my eyes.

The new camera, a Polaroid 300  although not quite as clunky, still has that retro, plastic look and feel. I couldn't wait to get started so here is my first attempt. Looking forward to taking it everywhere and getting creative.