six things: Douglas Robertson

Douglas Robertson

About Douglas

Douglas Robertson is an artist, who divides his time between his home in Hampshire, and exhibiting and researching his artwork in his native Scotland.

He has worked on numerous collaborations with some of Scotland’s most respected poets including Valerie Gillies, Kenneth White, Donald S. Murray, Jen Hadfield and Andrew Philip, and his work has been exhibited widely throughout the country.

“Douglas Robertson is a landscape artist in the best sense of that description, committed to a fundamental exploration of the relationship of human beings to their natural environment.

Robertson’s work is steeped in poetry and oral tradition. But he makes use of folklore and poetry rather than illustrating it. Instead the references in his work become themselves part of a living folklore, a poetical visualisation which takes one closer to nature through its spirits.”

— Murdo Macdonald, The Scotsman

Douglas’s website:

• One thing that’s always worth getting out of bed for

Journeys, and the people you meet on the way.

One thing I have loved about working as an artist, is that it has given me the opportunity to travel around the country, visiting a wide variety of interesting places, and work with some of the country’s finest poets and writers.
Many of the journeys I have taken have brought me to some of the most beautiful islands of Scotland, experiencing their colour and customs. The people of these islands have played a major part in the shaping of my work with their language, customs, folklore and traditions.

I hope to be getting out of bed for many journeys to come!

• One thing about myself that often obstructs me


My studio, or should I call it ‘the library’, is evidence of this – three large pencil drawings on the board almost close to completion, several assemblages sitting on the bench in various stages of production, and sketchbooks with numerous ideas and plans for new pieces, and exhibitions looming close. And what am I doing… reading poetry!

• One thing I’ve learned the hard way

That art is not easy, or should I say, creating art is not.

Any maker will probably agree that the process of creating is a love/hate relationship. Long periods of solitude and intense working in the studio are often the norm, but they are rewarded by the pleasure of seeing and hearing audiences enjoying the finished work.

• One thing that gets under my skin

Man’s inhumanity to man.

It worries me that with all the other pressing needs we have in this world in terms of human suffering and the plight of many nations, we still spend vast amounts of time and money on weaponry and warfare. Will we never learn?

• One thing I’d love to change

(Apart from the previous one thing, and my obvious procrastination problem.)

On a personal level, I’d love to relocate my studio to somewhere on the west coast of Scotland, and have more time to spend on my work and with my family.

On a wider level, I’d like to see a day where people have the opportunity to pursue their ambitions and dreams in a much more egalitarian world.

• One thing I hope for

Good health, strength and imagination to keep me working, for many years to come.

I’ve too many things on my list that I still want to do, see and experience. It all comes back to that first question of what’s worth getting out of bed for!

About six things

‘six things’ is a series of micro-interviews with interesting and creative people, in which they’re asked to respond to a standard set of six prompts. A new ‘six things’ is published on the site each Saturday.