And the Winner Is…..Lockdown Challenge Painting Result Announced

Judge Robert Mathieson has released us from our suspense. His decision on the great Piping Press Lockdown Painting Challenge can now be revealed! Everyone will appreciate his detailed analysis, and the artists themselves will be gratified that their work was examined by an expert.

Check out maestro Mathieson’s verdict now:

Sincere thanks to Robert for all his time and expertise.



Congratulations to the winner, John Archbold, Isle of Mull. John receives a £50 art materials voucher from Glasgow firm Hobbycraft. John’s subject is local piper Calum MacLean from Tobermory and in the background is Mull’s famous Duart Castle, stronghold of Clan MacLean.

John wrote: ‘A piper friend of mine wondered if I would be interested in entering. So here it is. Title – The Chief’s Piper at Duart Castle; Medium – Mixed Media; Size – A2 (59 x 40 cm approx.).’

John’s bio reads: ‘John Archbold DA (b. 1954) Studied at Glasgow School of Art in Drawing and Painting. In 1977 he was appointed Itinerant Teacher of Art and Design for the Isle of Mull. In 1983 he was appointed Principal Teacher of Art and Design at Tobermory High. 

John with his winning painting

‘Throughout his teaching career spanning over 30 years he has always kept developing his own work through drawing and painting. Archbold’s work adopts the bluer light of the Hebrides and the rich variety of texture and colours presented by the sea and shore. He believes he takes an ‘honest stance to his subjects’, which has resulted in powerful statements about the land and seascapes of Mull which he has now adopted as his own.’

Second place was David Bruce of the Dumbarton Pipe Band. David wrote: ‘This is the fruit of a week’s endeavour. It is painted in oils on canvas and these are the pipes I made in the foreground. It is inspired by the fact that we are not able to travel any time soon, so hopefully it is in keeping with the spirit of the challenge. 

‘I will call this one ‘Happy Place’ and I would like to thank you once again for hosting this challenge and inspiring me to paint again because I’m really enjoying myself.’ David receives a £50 voucher for the Piping Press Shop.

In third waas the very last submission to the Challenge. It was from US based artists Brian McKee. Brian wrote: ‘This is a pastel portrait I drew of my uncle Dave McKee, Pipe-Major of the Stockyards Kilty Band. I don’t know if it’s too late to be a part of your event, but I thought I’d give it a go!’ Brian receives a £40 voucher for the Piping Press Shop.

Detail from Brian’s drawing

Now to the Readers’ poll. Did you agree with our expert adjudicator? No!! A clear winner with 20% of the vote was picture number four, Piper at Sunset, by David Bruce. Second was the drawing placed third by P/M Mathieson (above). Third was a humorous offering from David Bruce, fourth the actual winner, fifth the second placed painting and sixth a fine still life from Lisa Begg. Check out the gallery of readers’ winners:

Here’s the graph confirming the first six placings in the poll:

Thanks again to everyone who took part. I hope you all enjoyed it as much as we did. There’s a lot of talent our there! If you’d like to buy a copy of any of the artworks in the Challenge then send an email to us and we will forward it to the artist though we can’t confirm if they are for sale.


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