Making a film poem

This time last year, I talked to my pal and collaborator Steve Smart about making another film together. Over the last couple of years we’ve worked on ‘Foraging’ about the way I find the trees which inspire my work and ‘Connecting’, which show how I get to know their individual characters through drawing. He created two beautiful short films which you can see here.

Tansy Lee Moir drawing at Marchmont residency

Steve’s new vision was to capture elements of my work as a film poem,


‘Landmarks’ Artist Talk online

Online Artist Talk, Thursday 4th January

I so enjoyed doing the artist talk with my fellow Calder Wood artists last month that I’ve decided to give an online one too, direct from my studio. Preparing to talk in public about your work really focuses the mind on the why as well as the how of making and I like the idea of sharing that in a reflective and hopefully informative way with all my supporters wherever you are.

a natural drawing tool for charcoal by Tansy Lee MoirI’ll be focusing on my latest body of work ‘Landmarks’, a series of charcoal pieces prompted by some of Calder Wood’s memorable trees.

It will be just for Studio News subscribers so you don’t need to book, just make you have added your email to my list, put the date in next year’s diary and I’ll send you details and a link nearer the day.

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charcoal drawing by Tansy Lee Moir on wall at Linlithgow Burgh Halls
Installation view of “A moment of poise’ at Linlithgow Burgh Halls 2023

This talk was recorded – you can now watch it here.


Calder Wood: Contemporary perspectives on an ancient woodland

Coming soon to Linlithgow Burgh Halls, West Lothian

19th October 2023 – 21st January 2024

Five artists spanning a variety of approaches and media will present works made over four seasons in response to the life and history of Calder Wood.

Along with Anne Gilchrist, Kirsty Venters Marks, Jennie Tuffs and Cordula Marks Venters, I have spent the last four seasons discovering some of the stories and secrets of West Lothian’s foremost ancient woodland.

For this collection of new work the artists have interpreted what they found in the wood from their own individual perspectives, exploring it from their differing cultural and historic viewpoints. The works here also consider the perspectives of the non-human world and how these ancient, complex relationships can be read in the landscape.

‘These works help us to look beneath the surface of what we see to understand the layers of human and non-human relationships more deeply.’

a charcoal drawing of a birch tree against the sky
‘Birken’ Charcoal on panel

The show encompasses vibrant colour, intricate detail, poetic imagination and dark drama. It aims to reveal some of the tiny marvels and big mysteries to be found amongst these trees.

See the virtual tour here»


There will be an Artist Talk with all artists on Thursday 23rd November, 6.30-8pm. Free, book here»

I will be in the gallery for informal ‘meet the artist’ opportunities on Saturday 11th November 10am-12noon and with Kirsty and Cordula on Sunday 10th December 12-2pm.

We are also planning a woodland walk – join my Studio News for details.

Visitor information

Linlithgow Burgh HallsLinlithgow Burgh Halls are fully accessible and open to the public every day 9am-5pm.

The exhibition is free to visit and the Halls are a 5 minute walk from Linlithgow train station on the Edinburgh-Glasgow line.

Full venue details here»


Marchmont House Collection Commission

the front of Marchmont HouseI’m honoured to announce that I have been commissioned by Marchmont House to create a triptych of charcoal drawings for their collection. I’ll be on residency there in the Old Squash Court for the first two weeks of June, where I’ll begin working on some new pieces in my ‘Ghosts’ series, based on Marchmont trees.


Spring exhibition news

an oil painting of an ancient beech tree
‘Roots reflected’ Oil on wood panel

Two of my oil paintings will be featuring in The Old Lock Up Gallery Open Exhibition opening 14th May and running until 10th June. I was very pleased to be selected to show in this beautiful gallery space along with 31 other artists – I’m looking forward to seeing all the works chosen by gallerist Rachael Pinks.

oil painting of an ancient tree
‘In Place’ Oil on wood panel

See here for a full list of artists, venue and show details.


Residency at The Old Lock Up Gallery

I’ll be on the road south to Cromford soon for a short artist residency at The Old Lock Up Gallery.

The Old Lock Up Gallery Cromford Derbyshire

My earliest plein air drawing experiences were of waterfalls and tree roots intertwined with Matlock gritstone outcrops. Rocks, tree and water featured in my art from very early on. Having lived in Scotland for more than half my life now,


Introducing the art of Calder Wood

a large tree in a lush green woodlandOn the horizon for autumn 2023 is a group show which I’m co-curating for Linlithgow Burgh Halls with West Lothian’s Arts Officer Camille Archer.

‘Calder Wood: Contemporary views on an ancient woodland’ will run from October 2023 – January 2024 in this beautiful historic building.

The focus for the exhibition is the rich and diverse ancient woodland site of Calder Wood, recently chosen as one of the Queen’s Green Canopy woodlands.


Review of the SSA 130th annual exhibition

I’m delighted that my drawing ‘Seraph’ got a mention in the Times this week. It’s one of three charcoal and conte drawings available from the 30×30 section of the exhibition. You can read the full article here.

small square artworks on gallery wall shelves a newspaper clipping

Thanks to Giles Sutherland for a great piece on the Society of Scottish Artists 130th Annual show at the Royal Scottish Academy and thanks to the whole SSA team for presenting such a rich selection in this impressive gallery.

The show runs until 10th January 2023.


Turning Towards the Light exhibition

poster for Turning Towards the Light exhibition

I’m delighted to announce my next solo exhibition ‘Turning Towards the Light’, a collection of oil paintings and drawings exploring the complexity, vitality and sculptural presence of ancient trees.

As humans we are both fascinated by darkness and compelled to turn towards the light. This exhibition brings together three bodies of work which combine light, shade and movement to draw attention to our relationship to trees.

Like most plants, trees employ phototropism, meaning they grow towards the light to maximise available energy. Although they turn far too slowly for human detection, they are constantly moving in response to their environment; twisting, reaching and flowing towards the sun. The work presented here is about that sense of movement, as if we were able to observe tree-time sped up to match our own.

Linlithgow Burgh HallsThe exhibition will be at the historic Linlithgow Burgh Halls, running from Friday 4th March to Sunday 26th June. Entry is free and there’s no need to book.

There will be a private view event on Thursday 3rd March – subscribe to my Studio Newsletter for an invitation.

I’ll also be doing an artist talk in the gallery on 21st April, contact me for more details.



Planning a new exhibition

I’ll be having a real-life, on the wall exhibition this June at Edinburgh Palette, my former studio complex and creative home in the east of Edinburgh – how exciting!!!

a colourful pastel painting of an old beech tree in winter‘On Tree Time’ explores the way trees adapt and endure in the face of adversity. It will feature a selection of new works on paper in charcoal, oil and pastel made during winter and spring 2020-21. The show opens Friday 4th June and closes on Sunday the 20th, so that’s 16 whole days where anyone who can travel to the area can come to see my newest work in person, have a proper chat with me and maybe even choose a piece for their own collection.

So much has changed over the last year that planning this exhibition feels almost like starting from scratch, even though I’ve been doing them for 10 years now. Private views and opening parties will need to be different, open door visiting may not be possible and hugs with friends, followers and colleagues will sadly be missing.

Some things will be the same though. For visitors, there’s the chance to get up close and personal with the art, to peer at the details as well as take in the whole view, to get a true sense of the textures, colours and energy of the work. For me, I relish the opportunity to show a collection of work with a coherent theme all together, the chance to talk about the story of the work with visitors, choosing favourites and great combinations, noticing rhymes and echoes, contrasts and creative leaps.  Sitting with my exhibitions has always been a favourite time for me to reflect on that body of work, review its successes and where it has fallen short of the idea. Almost always I come out of that process with new ideas sparked.

the outside of Edinburgh Palette St Margaret's House

One of the things that I like many creative people have missed so much is encountering the random, unexpected or surprising which can so often be the stimulus for new ideas. Alongside travelling to distant woodlands, it’s conversations with people not in my ‘bubble’ that I’ve missed the most. I’m so looking forward to talking to visitors about their experiences of trees and art, their knowledge and perspectives are always creatively energising.

To try and make the best of the current limitations, I’m putting together a programme of online and in person events linked to the exhibition so, if you’d like to hear about these and be first to get tickets, make sure you are subscribed to my Studio Newsletter. Find out how you can visit here and I hope to be showing you my new drawings very soon.