Inspired by Rahoy

Scottish Wildlife Winter 2019

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April 7, 2021

Rahoy Hills Wildlife Reserve near Lochaline, Morvern, encompasses a diverse range of habitats from windswept grasslands, mires and heaths to cliffs, lochans and oak woodlands.

Tall herbs and arctic alpines cling to the cliffs and golden eagles soar above the hills. Four years ago, Rahoy’s inspirational qualities spawned an idea for an unusual way to raise funds for the reserve.

The Rahoy Hills Artist-in-Residency was the brainchild of Anna Raven, who sits alongside local Trust members on the reserve management committee.
Each year, Ardtornish Estate has hosted an artist, who immerses themselves in the sights and sounds of the reserve. Their diverse interpretations of the reserve are displayed in the estate’s Boiler House Gallery.

The artists donate a proportion of their sales to the Scottish Wildlife Trust, helping to support the management of the reserve.

Here, we hear from several of the artists who have spent time at Rahoy.


“I was selected to be artist in residence on the Rahoy Hills Estate in 2018. I spent the first two weeks of my time staying in November and exploring the estate and the varied and atmospheric environment that is to be found there. My work made from my time on the estate is a reflection of the dominant peaks that are part of the landscape, the shifting of the elements and the significant beauty of
the place.”
More of Ellis’s artwork can be seen on her website,


“Rahoy Hills Reserve is an extraordinary place and, in part, a true signifier of what has been lost from much of the Scottish wilderness. To draw and paint there in support of the Scottish Wildlife Trust has been a privilege and although the resulting paintings are far from representational, they are in direct response to being there, walking and immersing myself in its unique landscape.”
More of Colin’s artwork can be seen on his Instagram account, @colinduncanartist


“My practice is inspired by contemplative moments spent in Scottish nature. I often create mystical landscapes which process encounters with Scotland’s wild beauty. The Rahoy Hills Wildlife Reserve on the Ardtornish estate has been a recent obsession. Spending six weeks on the reserve and accompanying the ranger, Steve Hardy, on a few of his surveys created a good understanding of its flora, fauna and geology. The oakwoods provided much inspiration, however, the rushing Arienas burn and dramatic Beinn Ladain have all made their way into my works since this period.”
More of Kyle’s artwork can be seen on his website,


“I am a botanist and artist living near Edinburgh. Since the late 1980s, I’ve made many visits to Rahoy Hills, doing botanical survey work and, from 2001 to 2017, as a member of the reserve management committee. I’m interested in all aspects of this reserve’s ecology, just as I am in all environments everywhere from mountains to cities, but my Rahoy artwork focused especially on the amazing mossy woodland and on the people who work there.”
More of Ben’s artwork can be seen on his website,


“I’m an illustrator currently creating comics and repeat patterns featuring different species of animal – cats, bats and blobfish to name a few. Exploring Rahoy Hills and learning about the various native species and conservation initiatives was exactly what I needed to breathe some new life into my work. I was inspired by my experience to create a series of all-ages comics – Wild Lives – based on these animals, with the aim to spark, in future generations, an interest in natural science and conservation.”
More of Claire’s artwork can be seen on her website,, and on social media @emseeitch