Illustrating Robert Burns’ Poetry

All drawings ©Peggy Edwards (AKA Peigi McCann)

Peggy Murrayshall Quarry DS 10-07-08

Peggy Edwards is freelance botanical & natural science illustrator. She was born and raised on the Central Coast of California, and currently divides her time between the Central Coast, the Sierra Nevada, and Scotland. Having completed her graduate degree in Natural Science Illustration at the University of California, she now spends her time writing, teaching and illustrating for clients such as the Nature Conservancy, the Sierra Club, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife; and for various authors and publications such as the Botanical Society of Scotland News.

Miss’s fine Lundardi – Scratchboard

“O wad some Power the giftie gie us
To see oursels as ithers see us!
It wad frae monie a blunder free us,
An’ foolish notion:
What airs in dress an’ gait wad lea’e us,
An’ ev’n devotion!”                                                                                                          

 (from “To a Louse. On Seeing one on a Lady’s Bonnet at Church.”)

Louse 8-3-12 Final 768

Scottish Harebell – Watercolor

“Mourn, little harebells o’er the lea;
Ye stately foxgloves, fair to see;
Ye woodbines, hanging bonilie
In scented bowers;
Ye roses on your thorny tree,
The first o’ flowers! ”                                                                                                                            

(from “Elegy on Captain Matthew Henderson”)

Scottish Bluebell or Harebell

Hare and Harebell – Watercolor

“Go live, poor wanderer of the wood and field,
The bitter little that of life remains!
No more the thickening brakes and verdant plains
To thee shall home, or food, or pastime yield. ”                                                                                       

(from “On Seeing A Wounded Hare Limp By Me 
Which A Fellow Had Just Shot At

Hare 01

Flowers from the Posie – Watercolor

“O, luve will venture in where it daur na weel be seen!
O, luve will venture in, where wisdom ance hath been!
But I will doun yon river rove amang the wood sae green,
And a’ to pu’ a posie to my ain dear May! ”                                                                            

(from “The Posie”)

02 Posie Final 768 Edwards best image

Haircap or Star Moss – Colored Pencil

“When Chapman billies leave the street,
And drouthy neebors neebors meet,
As market-days are wearing late,
An’ folk begin to tak the gate;
While we sit bousing at the nappy,
An’ getting fou and unco happy,
We think na on the lang Scots miles,
The mosses, waters, slaps and styles,
That lie between us and our hame,
Whare sits our sulky, sullen dame,
Gathering her brows like a gathering storm,
Nursing her wrath to keep it warm.”                                                                                                    

(from “Tam o’ Shanter”)

Common Haircap Moss - Polytrichum commune

The Twa Dogs – Scratchboard

“Twas in that place o’ Scotland’s isle,
That bears the name o’ auld King Coil,
Upon a bonnie day in June,
When wearin’ thro’ the afternoon,
Twa dogs, that were na thrang at hame,
Forgather’d ance upon a time.”                             

(from “The Twa Dogs. A Tale.”)

Twa Dogs sample

To a Mouse –Scratchboard

“But Mousie, thou art no thy lane,
In proving foresight may be vain:
The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men
Gang aft agley,
An’ lea’e us nought but grief an’ pain,
For promis’d joy!”                

(from “To a Mouse. On turning her up in her nest with the plough, November 1785.”)

To A Mouse 1175 x 1607

Burns and the Birks – Pen & Ink

“Bonie lassie, will ye go,
Will ye go, will ye go?
Bonie lassie, will ye go,
To the birks of Aberfeldie? ”                                   

(from “The Birks of Aberfeldy”)

The birks Final 8-3-12 768

Eglantine Rose – Graphite on vellum

Aft hae I rov’d by bonie Doon
To see the rose and woodbine twine,
And ilka bird sang o’ its luve,
And fondly sae did I o’ mine.
Wi’ lightsome heart I pu’d a rose,
Fu’ sweet upon its thorny tree!
And my fause luver staw my rose —
But ah! he left the thorn wi’ me.

(from “The Banks O’ Doon”)

Rosa rubiginosa 768 x 1024

Brown Trout – Colored pencil 

“The lightly-jumping, glowrin trouts,
That thro’ my waters play,
If, in their random, wanton spouts,
They near the margin stray;
If, hapless chance! they linger lang,
I’m scorching up so shallow,
They’re left the whitening stanes amang
In grasping death to wallow. ”                                   

(from “The Humble Petition Of Bruar Water
To the noble Duke of Athole”)

Brown trout 02