Roanne O'Donnell

Award winning Scottish painter and Dunfermline resident

The journey begins...

In 1983 I left my home in Comrie, to go it alone at Edinburgh College of Art.

My father, Luke, said...

"This will always be your home and you are always welcome here, but never cross this threshold again out of duty. I want to know that when you are here, it’s because you want to be."

With that, he gave me his blessing and freedom.


I have never returned as an obligation.

So after five years at college and another five living in Leith, I left Scotland. Spending four years down south...

A year of art study in Barcelona and eighteen years in Northern Norway, 250 miles north of the Arctic Circle working as a visual artist in the cultural sector...

I moved to southern Spain. I know - I don't look that old!

Two years ago, still on my long and 'interesting' journey, I visited my family and became Covid-stranded.

With time and space to open my eyes to what we have here in Dunfermline, I’m actually quite astounded.

That's because...

As a teenager, working after school in Fine Fare, going out to The Well, Old Inn, The Somewhere Else, and drinking cider on the benches outside the Glasshouses in the glen I never truly appreciated our countryside, our city, Kingdom or you.

We speak of and are proud of our magnificent Pittencrieff Park.

Our own Andrew Carnegie, his Hall and legacy.

Being once the capital of Scotland and with our Abbey, St. Margaret and Robert the Bruce, we can claim Dunfermline to fame.

We hold our heads high for our contemporary library, awarded the RIAS Best Building in Scotland Prize... and we have the prime Primark in Scotland (not kidding).

But ... for me ...

I appreciate the peace and calm of the familiarity of our unique sound too!

The Scots language (and our Dunfermline accent in particular) are so unique to us and so after years of being away engulfed in foreign tones, on my return, my ears can rest.

It's home.

Roanne O'Donnell

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