A new design-direction for me sees more of my HIGHLAND COLLECTION spring to vibrant life, featuring my photography of the CAIRNGORM MOUNTAIN in the Scottish Highlands.

Rebecca Johnstone Cairngorms - Pink
Rebecca Johnstone Cairngorms - Blue
Rebecca Johnstone Cairngorms - Purple + Lime

I love the bright saturation of colour that makes the nooks and crags of the Cairngorm mountain really sing. The Highland Cows (hi Henry! hi Henrietta!) have also taken on more adventurous personalities.

Rebecca Johnstone Highland Cow
Rebecca Johnstone Highland Cow - Blue

Using photographs from a trip up the CAIRNGORM on the Furnicular Mountain Railway (sadly, not currently in operation) last autumn, I was able to create these designs this week in time to enter them into the Wraptious Competition.

I’ve mentioned this competition before and it is a great kick-starter for the imagination - a deadline, a creative challenge. And anything goes.

Once uploaded, you get to see your designs mocked-up as square prints, canvas prints and on cushions, with customers able to purchase them for a limited time only (until 24th June 2019). It’s all very exciting.

I think my Highland Cows are rocking the cushion mock-ups!

What do you think? Would you welcome these designs into your home?

They would sit nicely in a contemporary living room or open plan kitchen/dining space i think. I quite fancy the blue cow for a bedroom too?

Find out more + purchase options on Wraptious. (The cushions are made with velvety vegan-suede…)

Please also ‘like’ and ‘share’ on their Facebook page if you genuinely like these designs - these actions = points in the competition!

Thank you for your support :)

Above was the view down the mountain about halfway through our descent. We also spotted some reindeer off in the distance, but not close enough to get a good photograph unfortunately. Another time?

Below, the minty green sky that melts into the landscape has to be my favourite. It speaks of a faraway place with no interruptions, clean, fresh air and a grounding, yet buoyant perspective. What do you see?

Rebecca Johnstone Highland Cow - Blue - Canvas Print

The Highland Cow

Introducing my take on the iconic Scottish Highland Cow.

Highland Cow Close Up, Rebecca Johnstone

With my Glasgow and Paisley collections well-stocked with designs, I thought it was time I turned my attention to my roots in the Scottish Highlands.

I think a lot of tourists visiting Scotland imagine seeing a Highland Cow as soon as they arrive on Scottish soil, maybe even grazing in a field outside the airport, but the Highland cow is in fact a little more elusive.

I realised just how elusive when I went to photograph some of these gorgeous beasts in their natural habitat.

Highland Cows on a Hill, Rebecca Johnstone

Lots of artists and designers feature Highland cows in their work, and instead of just jumping on the bandwagon, I wanted to experiment with the story I was trying to tell through my designs.

As I called to them from the fields, I fondly named the handsome pair I found grazing Hamish and Henrietta.

Highland Cow face, Rebecca Johnstone

I imagined a love story under the Highland stars; a courtship at the back of the cow shed. But maybe they’re both girls, or maybe they’re both boys, or maybe they’re even siblings - I’m not bias! Free (Highland Cow) love!

Highland Cow Coffee Shop, Rebecca Johnstone
Highland Cows, Rebecca Johnstone

I wanted to create a simple line illustration I could use in different ways, and then add texture. Creating the texture was fun! This is Hamish.

Hamish the Highland Cow illustration, Rebecca Johnstone
Highland Cow - textured, Rebecca Johnstone

I love both versions of Hamish, and the slightly disinterested expression. I mean, if anything sums up the attitude of a Highland Cow it’s disinterest surely?

This next version of the print with a background of my Mackintosh-inspired TARTAN ROSE pattern feels like it fits my more ‘maximalist’ style. Or maybe the simple white version on the patterned background would be better?

What do you think? Is it too much to have THREE Scottish trends in one image?!

Highland Cow illustration with patterned background, Rebecca Johnstone

Now I need to work a bit more on Henrietta to get that Highland romance off the ground…moooo!

Hamish and Henrietta Highland Cow Love, Rebecca Johnstone

Those gorgeous tousled fringes swishing in the breeze, the cute slobbery snouts and trusting eyes. I wish I could have taken one or both of them home with me, but that’s neither practical, responsible - or legal!

Highland Cows deserve to stay in the habitat they love, and that’s firmly in the Scottish Highlands enjoying the best of the Scottish weather, come rain or shine.

I see a Highland Cow pattern in my future. Watch this space for more Highlands-inspired designs. Also a big shout-out to my Dad, who knew just the spot for me to photograph Hamish & Henrietta :D

Accessibility: a lovely reader got in touch to ask for an audio version of my posts. This is the first time I’ve tried it but you should be able to listen to the audio below. Please note, neither of these are my own voice!