Colonsay Festivals

Celebrate on our beautiful Hebridean island

Our tutors and walk leaders
An abundance of expertise, talent & experience. Lecturers, workshop leaders & activity guides from all walks of life…..
united by their passion for Colonsay
KEVIN BYRNE – FERN WALKS & BEACH CLEAN
Kevin came to live on Colonsay in the late 70s, as owner of the hotel. Since then he has been bus driver, publisher, author, pier master,
walking guide & boatman.
SPECIALIST SUBJECTS – Ferns & Botany, Local Genealogy & History
 Kevin has been a
loyal supporter of the festival since its outset,
and is believed to be the only person to have owned & crashed a micro-light on Colonsay!

JONATHON LINGARD –
BIRD WALKS
Jonathon has a lifelong interest in all forms of wildlife and is widely travelled across the west coast Scottish islands.  He volunteers with the British Trust for Ornithology, surveying nests, dippers, curlews , ravens , raptors and the national atlas.
SPECIALIST SUBJECTS – Breeding Birds and Conservation
He was signed up for the Spring Fest when last year he managed to get Sarah to locate a nest through binoculars – a feat never before achieved!
JANE SMITH - PRINTING & BOOK TALK  
Jane lives in Argyll & has won many awards including Artist of the Year at the Society of Wildlife Artists in London.  When working on her book about Oronsay, - "Wild Island" , she visited in every month of the year, documenting our Hebridean wildlife seasons.
SPECIALIST SUBJECTS - Wildlife Artwork & Printmaking
Jane's former incarnation was as an Emmy-winning wildlife film-maker. 

PIP WEASER -
WEAVING WITH NEW ZEALAND FLAX
Pip is an artist living by Loch Melfort on the Argyll coast. She uses basketry techniques & recycled material to create functional or decorative objects.
SPECIALIST SUBJECTS - Preparing and using locally grown plant fibres
Pip has studied basketry with several international tutors and exhibited throughout the UK.  2017 will be her first Colonsay festival, having been recommended by her neighbour Jane Allan.
ANNE FERGUSON – TEXTILES WORKSHOPS. Anne first visited Colonsay as a Glasgow School of Art student in 1977. She ran a knitwear business & lectured in textiles at GSA for over 20 years. She now focuses on making Leaded Glass & working as an artist/design consultant in the UK, Europe and Africa
SPECIALIST SUBJECTS- Knitwear design & production, Leaded Glass Work
Anne has run workshops
for the Festival since 2012,
and in another life co-
authored ‘A Century of
Dining in Style’
with Carol Paterson.

CAROLE RENNISON – TEXTILE WORKSHOPS
Carole has always loved making thing & when she came across the art of hooking using carpet yarn she was literally hooked!  She established Hooked by Design & creates cushions, bags and picture kits, exhibiting at shows throughout the country . SPECIALIST SUBJECTS- Hooking & Crochet.  
2017 will be Carole’s first visit to Colonsay, having met Sarah at Yarndale, the fabulous Skipton wool fest which she runs with four friends.

MORAG TWEEDIE – TEXTILES & BOOKBINDING WORKSHOPS
Morag is a mixed-media & textile artist, who trained in Printed Textiles at GSA. She worked as a designer in London until moving to Orkney as a Lecturer and Curriculum Leader in Art & Design at Orkney College.
SPECIALIST SUBJECTS – Textiles & Fabric Dyeing Morag now lives in the Highlands & plans to build a new studio & base for running workshops. She teaches all over Scotland, and has recently started annual winter trips to Spain…. allegedly to run workshops!!
ALASDAIR MCMORRINE – PRINTING & MIXED MEDIA WORKSHOPS
Alasdair has been visiting Colonsay all his life, mostly staying on Oronsay where his Aunt & Uncle farmed. He studied at Glasgow School of Art, was head of art at Strathallan School, and is a widely exhibited artist. 
SPECIALIST SUBJECTS – Sculpting, Printing & the Highland year.
He now lives in Laggan and was once mistaken for Lord Lucan

CAROL PATERSON- KNITTING & COLLAGE SESSIONS
Carol has been a regular visitor to the island since her art school days – Carol went on to teach textiles at the GSA & is still based in Glasgow 
SPECIALIST SUBJECTS – Collage & Digital Art
Since retiring Carol
has been able to work at her own unique style of painting and exhibits throughout Scotland. She has 2 Labradors who are infamous for being able to get food out of any cupboard or any bin!


DAVID HOBHOUSE –
FARM WALKS
David has been living & farming on Colonsay (on & off) for 35 years
SPECIALIST SUBJECTS- Farming, Conservation & Life on a Remote Hill.
David has been leading walks during the Spring Festival since 2011, he is married to the organiser – and against his better judgment has recently become ‘interested’ in breeding sheep for wool!


THE COLONSAY & ORONSAY HERITAGE TRUST– HERITAGE WALKS & TALK.
 COHT was formed to promote and preserve the heritage of the two islands.
It is a great supporter of the festival, and Chairman Dave Binnie is also guest appearing in the Dry Stone Wall sessions!

JULIENNE BRAHAM -  LANDSCAPE  PAINTING WORKSHOPS
Julienne is a widely exhibited watercolourist and has regular shows in London, Cardiff & at home in the Welsh Marches.
SPECIALIST SUBJECTS – Landscape & Cloudy Welsh Skies. 
On Julienne’s first visit to Colonsay in 1974 the CalMac man in Oban promised that one of her party would come back engaged- that week she  met her future husband Jason. In 2015 they celebrated their 40th anniversary with an extra trip to Colonsay.

FI MARTYNOGA – FORAGING & C18 LIFE
Fi is a lifelong forager & gardener. She has written many books and is well known in Scottish Nature & Food Circles.
SPECIALIST SUBJECTS – Wild Foods & Sustainability

In 2005, after bemoaning the evils of modern living Fi was challenged to prove that people ate better 200 years ago. For 12 months she lived the 1790s life of her rural ancestors, eating from her garden & cooking recipes from the time on a fire.  She recorded the year in her book – ‘The Cottage Garden Diaries’

ANDREW MCMORRINE – HISTORICAL WALKS
Like his brother Alasdair, Andrew  spent much time on Oronsay with his Uncle & Aunt.  He
too graduated from the GSA before going on to teach art in Glasgow, The Western Isles and the Isle of Skye.
SPECIALIST SUBJECTS- Legends of Highland & Island. 
Andrew works from his studio in Skye -painting, printmaking and carving, using folklore & wildlife as inspiration. Back in the day he often had trouble negotiating the Strand to Oronsay - particularly when travelling home in the dark at night!
BRAIN HINDMARCH – PRINTING & PHOTO WORKSHOPS.
Brain first turned up on the island in 2001 with ‘a camera & an obsession’. He is a lecturer in Graphic Design and Print-making at the Bradford School of Art
SPECIALIST SUBJECTS –  
Etching & Drypoint.
His photographic
Journal  “Colonsay –
Elements of an Island"
was published in 2003.
Brian runs workshops
and exhibits his work across
his home county of Yorkshire, taking
inspiration from the landscape.

MORAG HALLIGAN – Jewellery Workshops
Morag's family farmed on Colonsay and she was brought up on Baleromindubh farm
SPECIALIST SUBJECTS – Jewellery & Dogs. 
Morag now lives in the Scottish Borders running a farm with her husband, alongside her jewellery making business. She comes back to the island whenever she can…mostly when her brother Gavin calls her in as an extra pair of hands for the Pantry at busy times!!
LOTTA LEAHY-
DRY STONE WALLING
Lotta’s family connection with Colonsay goes way back, and she has been a frequent visitor since childhood.
SPECIALIST SUBJECTS – Horticulture & FeltWork
Lotta now lives on the island in a house she
& her husband built.  She commutes to Oban
in the week where she teaches at the college. She is an artist in her own right and produces fabulous feltwork


The festival is organised by the Colonsay Tourism Marketing Group, and kindly supported by Cal Mac, Hebridean Air, and our amazing experts, contributors and workshop leaders who all give of their time for nothing. 
A huge thank you to all of them!
Any proceeds from the festival go towards establishing Colonsay as a vibrant visitor destination, thus lending vital support to the fragile edconomy.
Thanks also to everyone who has allowed us to use their photographs - especially Ruari Cumming ARPS
JANE ALLAN –
WILLOW WEAVING.  
Jane lives on a smallholding in Achnamara, running holiday cottages, growing vegetables & weaving baskets. Her willow workshops are designed to give a taste of working with willow and the basic techniques needed to create simple woven items. 
SPECIALIST SUBJECTS - Living the Good Life & Growing Willow
Jane’s first appearance at the festival was in 2015, after Sarah overheard her in the Colonsay bar talking about her basket work and persuaded her to come back to teach at SpringFest.
DAVID JARDINE – WILDLIFE & BIRD WALK and TALK
David has been surveying the birds on Colonsay for over half a century.  These studies will be documented in a new book - Birds of Colonsay & Oronsay, planned to be launched at the Spring Festival.
SPECIALIST SUBJECTS -  Colonsay Birds & Wildlife
David is also a bird ringer & has a close relationship with some of our seabirds, having ringed & then re-caught them over a 25 year period.
 


Please contact Sarah Hobhouse if you would like to reserve places or require any further info.