15th July 2020

We're delighted to be one of the destinations featured in Visit Scotland's Sketching Scotland campaign. Learn to draw Abbotsford with the video below and find out more about the campaign and it's tutorials covering iconic sights across Scotland

From the picture-perfect houses of Tobermory and the scene stealing beauty of the Glenfinnan Viaduct; to the classic crossing of the Forth Bridge and the eye-catching design of V&A Dundee, Scotland’s landmarks are often considered a work of art.

So, while travel restrictions remain in place due to the Covid 19 pandemic, VisitScotland has come up with a new way to draw attention to some of the country’s most iconic sights.

Part of its online activity to help visitors dream now and travel later, the national tourism organisation has launched Sketching Scotland. A series of 20 short videos teaching virtual visitors how to sketch landmarks and locations such as Glenfinnan Viaduct, Caerlaverock Castle and the Kelpies.

Each tutorial is accompanied by a voiceover giving advice and tips on how to create your drawing, as well as facts about each destination. It is hoped the creative campaign will inspire those who have sketched at home to visit the landmarks once travelling is possible.

Sketching Scotland is just one of several initiatives the national tourism organisation has created to bring Scotland to visitors. Other online offerings include videos, blogs, a rundown of the best virtual experiences currently on offer, a dark skies-inspired series and ideas to entertain littles ones during lockdown. There are also advice pages on the latest Scottish Government guidelines.

As the sector gears up for a potential reopening on 15 July, VisitScotland is using its online resources to help keep Scotland at the forefront of visitors’ minds. It is also working closely with the Scottish Government, industry partners and businesses to provide support and guidance to aid the recovery of one of Scotland’s most valuable tourism sector.

Eva Kwiecinska, VisitScotland’s Senior Content Marketing Manager, said: “The Coronavirus pandemic has had a devastating impact on the tourism industry. It’s important that new and returning visitors are still dreaming about Scotland even if they can’t physically explore just yet. We felt Sketching Scotland was a fun take on sightseeing, so even if you can’t physically visit you can still learn about some of our best-loved attractions in a completely new way. We were also conscious that people are looking for ways to use their time creatively and learn a new skill. We loved the thought that people all over the world could be taking 15 minutes to relax, draw and think of Scotland, and of course hopefully visit in’ real life’ when that is possible.

“As restrictions are eased further, we look forward to helping encourage Scots to rediscover the own country, while at the same time supporting businesses as they prepare for the inevitable operational changes and ensuring that communities feel comfortable and capable of welcoming visitors in a safe way."

Abbotsford is among the destinations featured in Sketching Scotland, our Collections and Interpretation Manager Kirsty Archer- Thompson said: "Abbotsford is one of the highlights of the Romantic era and one of the most famous buildings in the world, one of only a handful of homes in existence designed by an author as a shrine to creativity.

"It has a phenomenal footprint in the history of art, illustration and early photography. The house and estate has played host to a string of famous artists, including J.M.W. Turner, David Wilkie, Edwin Landseer and William Allan.

"The Sketching Scotland project will enable amateur artists to follow in those great footsteps and create their own image of Abbotsford, and other amazing places in the region, until we can welcome them here again."

Iconic sights which will feature throughout the series include V&A Museum, Old Man of Hoy, Orkney, Italian Chapel, Riverside Museum, Glenfinnan Viaduct, Bow Fiddle Rock, Portknockie, Forth Bridge, Calanais Standing Stones, Duff House, Tobermory houses at the harbour on Mull, The Pineapple, near Falkirk, The Kelpies/Falkirk Wheel, Caerlaverock Castle, Scottish Crannog Centre, Scottish Dark Sky Observatory, St Abbs Harbour, Abbotsford House, Culross houses, Dunfermline Abbey and Sumburgh Head and lighthouse.

To try more from Sketching Scotland visit: and share your sketches on social media using #sketchingscotland