Aimee Smith has her mind on a different kind of stroke as she takes on the world famous Royal Dornoch golf course.
The Nashville-based artist has just completed a 5ft by 6ft painting to hang in the home of an American couple as a reminder of the favourite links.
The private commission of the Championship Course 13th hole is her biggest challenge to date.
“The couple are regular visitors to Dornoch, and they’d seen prints of the paintings I have already done,” said Aimee.
“After talking things through we settled on a panoramic view looking towards the Firth and the distant hills over the 13th, a par 3 hole surrounded by intimidating bunkers.”
A permanent reminder of the golf course
Being an ex-pro golfer, the husband had travelled the world playing countless different golf courses.
“But he remembered Royal Dornoch most fondly and the couple still enjoy regular visits.
“Their passion for the Championship Course was obvious from our first Zoom call. They were looking for a permanent reminder in their home of their favourite golf course.
“It was a little daunting initially as it would be my biggest painting to date.
“But after the initial sketch was on the canvas I was much more comfortable.
“Now that it’s in their home they say it feels like you can walk into the painting.
“To hear them say that was incredible, as that is the goal every time I sit down in the studio and paint.”
Aimee is also working on a series of paintings capturing the ever-changing mood of the Championship Course.
She plans to create up to six paintings and prints of the historic links in its various guises in what will be a labour of love.
Aimee is a regular visitor to Dornoch, often accompanied by her Scots-born husband Steve, a one-time golf professional.
“So many visitors come principally for the golf and it seeps into their soul,” she said.
“I know from personal experience that they also fall in love with the town. It is a very special place.
“There is certainly no shortage of inspiration for an artist.
Paintings that trigger memories
“I have visited Royal Dornoch at different times of the year and it is amazing how the course and the light changes, even over the course of a day, never mind with the passing seasons.
“The challenge for me is capturing that on canvas so golfers can enjoy a print which triggers fond memories of their visit to one of the great links courses of the world.”
For the first two paintings, she focused on a Royal Dornoch sunrise on the 14th hole.
She is now planning the next in the series after examining photographs and drone footage with Royal Dornoch general manager Neil Hampton and past captain Willie Mackay.
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