My Business: I am mostly known for my architectural illustrations but also design and produce a series of city themed word maps.
Starting Out: I’ve never wanted to do anything else. It was only a matter of what I wanted to draw and what I was capable of drawing. Once I realised portrait painting was far from my thing I quickly deduced I was safer drawing inanimate man made objects!
Business Name: I trade officially under, Adrian B McMurchie Ltd. So far I’ve not found anyone else in the world with the same name so fairly confident I won’t be confused with anyone else. I sometimes appear under the name, McMurchie and McMurchie. This covers both aspects of my work. The painting/illustrating element and the graphic design side.
Previous jobs: I had a brief stint as a graphic designer after leaving college and various techy jobs in the theatre.
“Typical” working day: I normally get up about 6am and work for a couple of hours before taking my daughter to school. I then work through to about 4pm dipping in and out throughout the evening depending on the workload. I try not to work at night and definitely not all nighters! That’s just not good for you. No point in being some sort of martyr when you can easily just get up early the next day.
Self employment highs: Choosing your own hours and not answering to someone else. As a creative it’s pretty essential to have a free reign over what you choose to do and when you do it.
Self employment lows: Having to do everything from getting work to doing it, balancing the books etc. Also fairly annoying when employed friends constantly pass comment on sleeping all day and having an easy ride of it.
Inspiration: As the majority of my work is of an architectural nature inspiration is taken from the builds around me. Living in Glasgow, one of the world’s finest Victorian cities, there’s never a lack of this.
Find me: In terms of my prints you can find them on Etsy and Not On The High Street. I also sell from these outlets: Singl-end Bakehouse – Glasgow, The Shop of Interest – Finnieston, Velvet Moon – Finnieston, Jolly Molly – Isle of Arran, Discover Glasgow – Glasgow Airport, Noah Home & Gift Boutique – Silverburn, Spirito – Glasgow, Wild Grace – Uddingston, Teasel and Tweed – Aberdeen, Luss General Store – Luss, Orsay – Oban, Nancy Smillie – Glasgow.
Business Achievements: Probably the large installation jobs I have in buildings such as Lakeside Shopping Centre, Glasgow Airport, Porcelanosa and The Corinthian. More recently, Glasgow Loves Christmas was great to work on which included a full poster campaign and animation.
Longterm Goals: I’ve never really enjoyed the, “Where do you see yourself in 10 years” question as such. I’ve always had the attitude of keep your head down and slowly work your way up the hill. Don’t concern yourself with what anyone else is doing. Long term, if pushed at for an answer would be to continue what I’m doing with hopefully better and consistently new ideas along the way.
Promotion: I’m in the process of getting my website redesigned. I studied Graphic Design at college but quickly realised I needed a web person to help with this, It will be live soon. I think with the advent of social media and the internet this has made a huge difference to getting seen.
Popular and Favourite Products: There are various paintings I particularly like including my New York and Chicago series but my favourite piece of work to date is, “A Reasonably Accurate Map of Glasgow“. I read a book on maps of Scotland, “Mapping the nation” and the old Ponts maps gave me inspiration for this. I also included about 30 spot illustrations of Glasgow builds throughout it. I sell it as a print but the original hangs on the wall in our bedroom.
With Hindsight: Have more confidence in your own abilities. Easier said than done as a youngin’ mind you. Never rest on your laurels. Finish a job, put that behind you and move onto the next whilst looking for another. Have a few balls in the air at once preferably different types of work.
At Home: I have a couple of paintings I have done a swap with. That’s the advantage of being an artist, you can acquire original artwork without having to pay fortunes. We also have a few mirrors by Turning Tables. They tend to upcycle furniture but also cover old mirrors with maps and other bespoke designs. Also various bits and bobs from Not on The High Street
Favourite Designers: Turning Tables in Symington, North Ayrshire.
In my Private Jet: San Francisco. Lovely people, food architecture and near wine country.
Favourite destination in Scotland? St Kilda. Lucky enough to be asked by NTS to go on a short cruise to illustrate life on board.
Favourite Scottish Tourist Attraction? Kelvingrove Art Galleries. Been going for 40 years and it loses nothing in what it has to offer.
Favourite Scottish Band? Mogwai
Favourite Scottish Celebrity: Billy Connolly and Robbie Coltrane.
Hidden Scotland: Too many to mention but Kippford in the Solway Firth and various spots in Speyside.
Best thing about Scotland: The craic and countryside and Islands (that coming from a self confessed city dweller).
Do you believe in Nessie? Yes. No, but yes!
Favourite TV Show: Curb your enthusiasm
Favourite Film: Too many to mention but probably, Local Hero, Withnail and I or Drugstore Cowboy
Favourite Book: Too many again but probably something by Paul Auster. Reading a lot of map books these days!
Anything else we should know: I used to play drums and I’m quite good at catching things.
Shop Scotland – https://www.shop-scotland.com/mcmurchieandmcmurchie.html
Website – http://www.amcmurchie.com/
Twitter – https://twitter.com/adrianmcmurchie
Etsy – www.etsy.com/uk/shop/amcmurchieprints
NOTHS – http://www.notonthehighstreet.com/mcmurchieandmcmurchie
Big thanks to Adrian for giving us such an insightful and interesting interview. Look out for another Shop Scotland interview coming soon, and yep it’s another Glasgow based business 🙂