Must Paint Scot

Sandend Paintings – a hidden gem by the Moray Firth

Sandend, Aberdeenshire

Sandend paintings are all about roofscapes, reflections and wild seas in this half-hidden corner of the Moray Firth. Tucked below short steep slopes and the well-farmed fields, Sandend is a former fishing community with a long history. (The local folk pronounced it ‘san-eyn‘ and maybe they still do.)

The fishers have gone these days – though a fish shop and processing business survives (top quality for freshness). Where once nets were dried on green spaces, it’s more likely there are wet-suits and other such recreational paraphernalia swaying in the wind.

The older part of the village is picturesque and classic holiday-home territory. That’s just how it is.

When exploring this attractive part of the Moray Firth coast, Sandend is well worth a look. It’s midway between Cullen and Portsoy – two more equally historic and must-see places in the area. And a coastal path leads off east and west from Sandend so you can explore all along this fine coastline.

Sandend paintings: view of the harbour and the old village.
Sandend Paintings: view of the harbour and the old part of the village on the Moray Firth, Aberdeenshire.

Sandend village in spring. Fine art print, framed and ready to hang.
Sandend, watercolour

Sandend Paintings – a watercolour from ‘way-back

Rather unusually (for this collection) the painting just above is purely watercolour – so I must have got lucky! Some of it was painted down by the shore (I mean out of doors) on a raw spring morning and it is the only painting sheet that I have ever worked on that has ever been blown off the board/easel. It landed by the water’s edge but somehow survived.

By the way, the curious grey rocks in the foreground are limestone, formerly quarried here – though if they had quarried away any more at this spot they would have had to remove the only road access to the old village.

The second painting (at top of page) is gouache, just the thing to reproduce the ripples of the water in the little harbour on a calm summer day.

You’ll find more about the Moray Firth on my other website –