Stirling Castle

When Joel and I visited Stirling Castle on our trip to Scotland, I didn’t know what to expect. I knew it was going to be good, but I had no idea of the staggering amount of restoration that has gone into making this castle one of the best (if not the best) in the country.

Not only have the exteriors been restored and meticulously maintained, but the interiors have been completely recreated to represent the decor of the 1500s, complete with knowledgeable costumed staff. Partnering with a vast team of master artisans, everything from the painted walls and ceilings down to the textiles and tapestries have been re-created using techniques of the day. It is a truly impressive thing to see.  This collaboration must have been a massive undertaking, but the end result is spectacular. It’s amazing that they managed to pull it together.

The beauty of a restoration like this is that it really gives you a sense of the history of the place. When Joel and I visited Wales last year, we saw many a castle ruin; none of them were restored. While I’m a fan of ruins, it’s very difficult to image how it would have looked back in the day. Stirling Castle, being restored, gave you a real sense of history and of stepping back in time.

Highlights include the medallion ceiling, the replica tapestries and the “boat” ceiling in the great hall.  I will be inspired by my visit to Stirling Castle for years to come.


In preparation for mine and Joel’s trip to Wales this spring, I have be re-reading the Mabinogion (collection of Welsh folktales). I’ve always been inspired by Celtic mythology to create my illustrations, so I’m hoping that a trip to the actual place will add another layer of inspiration to my work.

This is Rhiannon on her white horse when she is first glimpsed by Pwyll.