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Magical Events, Shopping and Festive Fun in the Heart of the City
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Posted on 15/12/2016
The artist and illustrator, Adrian McMurchie, who has brought the Glasgow Loves Christmas campaign so beautifully to life with his detailed and intricate drawings, talks to us exclusively about his favourite things to do in the city at Christmas time.
What is your favourite family festive activity to do around the city?
We went to this year’s Christmas Lights Switch on, which was a first for us. It was an impressive display of fireworks and the new George Square lights looked great. A cracking family event.
What has been your favourite aspect of working on the Glasgow Loves Christmas campaign?
The first and most obvious thing is having my work seen and hopefully enjoyed by thousands of people in Glasgow and beyond. One of my favourite styles of architecture is Victorian so this was a delight in the sense that most of the buildings to draw, including the magnificent City Chambers, are from this era.
Where is your top place to go for Christmas drinks or food in the city?
I used to illustrate the restaurant review for Joanna Blythman in the Sunday Herald so have a lot of restaurants close to my heart so too many to choose from but I'd have to include: Singl-end; Guys; Two Fat Ladies at The Buttery and Wee Lochan. Caffe Parma is also pretty inviting at this time of year with the warm glow from the glass structure. Basically warm cosy places with great food, drink and staff. For drinks, it has to be Chinaskis, The Drake and Cottiers.
What about the shopping? Are you prepared or last minute shopper?
As Christmas is a busy time workwise I try to be on top of the shopping but as it gets closer the pressure builds! Fortunately I work for myself, so I can head into the shops in town at a time that suits me.
What is your ideal Christmas Eve?
We don't have any set plans for Christmas Eve but in the past we have gone into town as a family and had a walk around the Christmas markets and enjoyed a festive drink. A couple of years ago the Berkeley Suite played It's a Wonderful Life. There was only a dozen or so folk in the room, so it felt like your own private showing. My wife had never seen it before, which made it all the better.
You've recreated many parts of the city at Christmas time as illustrations. Where do you think the most beautiful place in the city is at Christmas?
It’s difficult to beat George Square with the City Chambers as a backdrop but Kelvingrove Art Gallery with the University of Glasgow in the background is always a winner. Probably my favourite view at any time of the year is from high up in Kelvingrove Park just underneath the University steeple – it’s a lovely view of the Art Gallery with the tenements of Sauchiehall Street to the south.
What is your Christmas Day like?
My daughter is nearly seven so the last few years have been magical around this time of the year – we are revelling in that. On Christmas Day we tend to go out for lunch, as it takes the pressure off everyone and saves you porking out on nuts and crisps!
What is it about Glasgow that inspires you to recreate it as art?
As I mentioned above, the city architecture is inspiration enough. I have been painting it for over 20 years and constantly find interesting views and buildings. Sadly the vast majority of classic cafes have disappeared but the University, Kings and Derby are still going strong and looking every bit as good as when they were designed. These clearly resonate with people as they are amongst my best selling prints.
Adrian McMurchie lives and works in his beloved Glasgow. The majority of his work is of an architectural nature, depicting buildings and cityscapes. Through his preferred medium of watercolour and ink he tries to express the dynamic contours of city buildings and reflect the vigour of urban life.
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