Must Paint Scot

3 Paintings of Cullen on the sunny Moray Firth

Here are some paintings of Cullen. This wee place is worth a visit any time. It faces north, out into the Moray Firth, and all the time I lived near there it never ceased to surprise me how far north the sun set around midsummer. Almost the land of ‘the simmer dim’, in fact – an expression they use even further north to describe the way the sunset merges with the dawn and it never gets very dark.

I have heard that a couple of streets in Cullen used to be called ‘Little Glasgow’ – a reminder of how popular the place is with holiday folk. Small wonder, with a scenic fisher-toun below and a later ‘new town’ above, Cullen is full of charm – as well as a good selection of shops.

Paintings of Cullen: a midsummer sunset.
Cullen midsummer sunset

In fact, it has of recent years picked up what almost could be seen as ‘critical mass’ – one antique shop or one gallery or gift shop encouraging another, so that now there is plenty of browsing opportunity. (But it’s got a decent Co-op as well for the basics!)

All that, plus a wacky golf course and a splendid walk along the old trackbed of its long-vanished coastal rail link – and not forgetting beaches and cliffs to east and west – mean that Cullen is just, well, a super wee town/village on the Moray Firth. (Actually, it’s my favourite.)

Paintings of Cullen: that midsummer sunset

The artwork above is mostly in gouache with some water-soluble crayon (but not the stuff you’ll use in kiddies’ playgroups!)

There is a casual white border in the original – which I’ve kept in the print – and that comes about because on that day I used a board that held the paper via four wood strips held on with clips (that is, after I had soaked and dried it). I kinda like the effect and I think you will too, if you decide it would make a good souvenir of a trip you made there…ah, fond memories…

The Three Kings of Cullen

This is the name given to three little rock stacks, two in the sea (at high tide) and one on the golf course down by the long sandy beach to the west of the sea-toun of Cullen. They have probably attracted lots of artists to work on paintings of Cullen featuring these particular rock formations. Cullen also has a lovely beach, of course, and walks there can be extended round to the cliffs by neighbouring Portknockie with yet more rock formations, including the famous Bow Fiddle Rock.

Three Kings, Cullen, Moray - at sunset
The Three Kings (actually, only two are on the beach) Cullen, at sunset

Paintings of Cullen: two of the Three Kings, looking east.
Two out of the Three Kings, looking east

More information on the Moray Firth here.