At the start of September – which I think was either last week or six months ago – I asked Twitter what their favourite Scots language animal names were. I'd just before thought of the word 'slater' and realised it was one of the few Scots words I've kent since I was a bairn. (In English, a slater is a woodlouse.)
The tweet became one of the most-responded to I've posted, with over 250 replies! It was so popular that the Daily Record even did a wee story about it. No, really – they did!
The replies on Twitter taught me many brilliant names, as well as reminding me of a few I'd forgotten. It seemed obvious then – at least to me – that I should do something with this marvellous treasure trove. And so…
The beasties are here
Today I am launching my new Beasties collection. I've drawn fifty animals of land, sea and air, and paired them with their Scots names. The range of names shows just how amazing and distinct the Scots language is, as well as its links to other northern European languages.
For these colourful drawings I took inspiration from mid-century design and pop art stylings. I spent weeks drawing and re-drawing some of our most-beloved beasties, rendering them in the muted colour palettes I so enjoy. They're all grounded on textured blocks of rolled ink, that I made by hand one messy and fun afternoon.
The drawings are an ideal way to demonstrate yer love of Scots language and the braw beasties o oor country. Each is available as a poster, card, magnet, giclée print, mounted print or in a choice of three calendars.
There's also a version with a wee description of the beastie in Scots on the drawing. These are only available as either a poster or giclée print.
I want to say a big thank you to the Scots Language Centre for their invaluable help in putting together my Beasties collection. It's a great organisation, doing important work. I hope you'll support them.