Local artist commissioned by St Giles’ Cathedral

Tuesday July 4th 2023

Gill Bertram Midlotjian Artists

Midlothian artists Gill Bertram.

Article written by Midlothian journalist Merle Brown.

A local artist has been commissioned by St Giles’ Cathedral, Edinburgh, to create its 2023 Christmas card.

The iconic Edinburgh cathedral, where Queen Elizabeth II lay in state after her death in September last year, has long been a favourite subject of artist, Gill Bertram, and she is thrilled to have been given this special commission on the back of a previous piece of work featuring the iconic landmark.

Gill explained: “Some time ago, I created an image of St Giles’ Cathedral using my unique style of working, which involves layering ripped paper, water colour paints, oil pastels and fine liner pens.

“I aimed to capture the historic grandeur and ornate beauty of the cathedral, and I sold the finished artwork privately.

“I then approached the St Giles’ Cathedral shop with a view to selling my cards and prints from the original illustration and was very pleased when they said they’d love to stock my design, along with other designs in my Edinburgh collection that I had shown them.

“My designs have sold well in their shop for over a year, and I was delighted when, on the back of that, they asked me to design their Christmas card for this year.

“By adding a Christmas tree and lights in my own mixed media style, my aim was to create a tree that complimented the architecture. I made a few other tweaks to the original design, and I’m really pleased with the outcome and thrilled to have done it.

“I hope it will be a route for my artwork to make its way across the globe.”

Gill, 49, is originally from Aberdeen, but has lived and worked in Edinburgh for over two decades and is constantly inspired by Scotland’s capital.

She said: “I take all of my inspiration from the majestic architecture of Edinburgh. I feel blessed to be surrounded by such vibrant buildings, and I hope I portray their energy in my artwork – I’m constantly drawn to the distinct colour palettes and stonework.”

Gill’s journey as an artist began in a very different setting – that of the gaming world, where she won a BAFTA.
She said: “I have worked on many varied platforms and titles in the computer games industry, and I won a BAFTA in 2000 with Attention To Detail for their Sydney 2000 game. More recently, I worked on Grand Theft Auto titles with Rockstar North in Edinburgh.

“I also have one of my anatomical sketches in the permanent collection at The Anatomical Museum at Edinburgh University.”

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