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Saturday, 29 October 2011


Last week the film circus returned to the Highlands with Emma Thompson's new period drama feature, Effie, starring Dakota Fanning. Effie tells the story of the affair between the Victorian Art critic John Ruskin's wife and John Everett Millais and there were plenty of costumes that would have looked quite at home at the Insider. I was tasked with taking Petal the Land Rover out to the west coast, along with a couple of cohorts from Aviemore, where I was detailed to the camera department for the week and given the challenge of not getting stuck, flooded or lost. Here I am executing an inelegant reentry after a river burst its banks and the days set had to be speedily evacuated.

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Spoon Carving.

Last weekends spoon carving course was a great success, Wooden Tom did a fine job of making sure everyone kept their fingers and got the basics required to carve a spoon. The 6 folk who came along all left promising to go out and buy themselves axes, knives and gouges. Three of them have booked for the bowl carving course we are running on 15th November (which is already sold out) but more courses can be put together on a pretty ad hoc basis if you have 6 people up for it, and £40 seems very reasonable for a whole day of crafty, carvy and rewarding entertainment.

Monday, 10 October 2011

Resident : 11

Friday was a quickfire run down to Edinburgh and the Royal Scottish Academy for the opening night of the Resident : 11 exhibition. The RSA have supported a number of artists through their Residents for Scotland programme. They have a network of predominantly art institute partners across Scotland and contemporary artists get to spend time in research and production in unusual locations. The RSA have partially funded the Bothy Project as part artwork and part miniaturised embodiment of what they are trying to achieve.

After seeing pictures of ourselves and the build plastered across the hallowed walls of the RSA we are coming back to earth by figuring out rainwater harvesting and filtering and we need get our hands on enough larch to clad the gables.

Saturday, 1 October 2011

Huts all round.

Last weekend saw another bothy building delegation descend on Inshriach, now the wall cladding is on, the side windows are in, complete with beautiful oak sills and sides, and most of the insulation and lining has gone in. The architectural detail that has gone into the design is starting to tell in the overall proportions, the views through the building, the floor to eaves windows, the custom made, diminutive and beautiful (if probably not very practical) folded gutters and the silvery cladding. It is a traditional bothy with a modernist twist. We are two weeks off the next build party when we hope to have it clad, windowed and watertight. There is a much more extensive blog and photo gallery of the build here on the bothy project website.

Meanwhile, just along the valley at the Lazy Duck in Nethy Bridge, David and Valerie have just finished their fabulous Woodmans hut, living proof that there is more than one way to skin a cat. Their hut is situated on the old woodmans trail that runs through their forest and is mostly built with timber thinned from its immediate surroundings. The hut has great views of the Cairngorms and a veranda out front perfectly suited to Appalacian relaxation. Inside it has a box bed, a stove, oak flooring and a great little kitchen, outside there's a bush shower, compost loo and fridge (ie a stream). Its very cute and I highly advise getting in to stay there before they realise what a bargain it is or it gets famous and is booked out all the time.