An illustration of historic Harthill Castle in Oyne, ancient seat of the Leith’s of Harthill is the backdrop to North East MSP Alex Salmon’s official Christmas card, which will raise funds for local charities.
The former First Minister commissioned Highland artist Ann Vastano to paint a local scene from his constituency, and Mrs Vastano chose historic Harthill, partly inspired by Robert Burns “Ca’ the Yowes to the Knowes”.
Since 2007 artwork from the sale of Mr Salmond’s Christmas cards has raised more than £168,800 for good causes through auction of the original paintings and limited edition prints. This year Cairngorm Mountain Rescue will benefit from the sale of the original painting.
Mr Salmond said, “I was greatly impressed when I saw Ann Vastano’s artwork at an exhibition marking the tenth anniversary of the Cairngorm National Park and so was delighted when she agreed to create an image for my Christmas card.
“Moira and I are thrilled with this festive image, inspired by Robert Burns, and depicting Harthill Castle in the shadow on Bennachie. As a scene from my constituency in Aberdeenshire it has particular meaning and I think it is a wonderful piece of work. As I have done in previous years, the original artwork will be auctioned to raise money for charity and I am certain this year’s image will be a big success in raising funds.”