Support for older artists forging new directions

Luminate has awarded bursaries to 11 older artists working in Scotland to extend their professional development and launch new projects. 

The successful recipients are all aged over 50 and are in the early stages of a new artistic career. Several have practised different art forms throughout their lives but are now moving into new directions while others are forging entirely new careers across the arts including dance, writing, visual arts, printmaking, and sculpting.

The 11 recipients are: 

Carolyne Nurse, Sculpture, Newburgh 

Carolyne works with washed up seaweed from beaches in Fife and Angus. She will receive specialist training in working with metal and electro-forming in copper and silver to make sculptures that reference and include seaweed within them. 

Catherine Macleod, Printmaking, Dingwall 

Catherine moved to Scotland from Australia in 2018 and was born in a small mission village in Papua New Guinea. Her style is influenced by her Pacific Islander heritage and her husband’s Scottish culture. Her bursary will provide tailored printmaking courses through the Highland Print Studio in Inverness. 


“I’m very excited to continue with the next step of my artistic journey. The Luminate Bursary Programme will help me to develop a range of printmaking skills which will take my visual art to the next level.” 

 Christine Thynne, Dance, Edinburgh 

Christine will explore her passion for dance and physical performance and love of kayaking. Working with a mentor – choreographer Robbie Synge – she will work with movement in, on, and out of the water using her kayak, ropes, objects, and logs from the woods.  

“I am really thrilled to get this Luminate bursary as it is exactly the kind of help and support I need to pull myself out of a challenging time. This award will enable me to rediscover my physical and creative practice, which is something that has been so difficult to maintain given the social situation for the past 18 months.” 

David Taylor, Creative writing, Cumbernauld 

David’s writing project will tell the newly discovered stories of his grandfather, Cuthbert. His bursary will support development of the final written piece including mentoring and research. 


“My work has focused on short stories and flash fiction and this bursary will allow me to work with a mentor to complete a full-length work using existing historical text, together with my own fictional interpretation of characters and events,” he said. 

“I will be drawing on the life of my grandfather, and of the people around him and take in the world of Edwardian touring theatre, experiences in the Machine Gun Corps (nicknamed ‘The Suicide Club’) in France and Russia, my grandmother’s nursing service in the Scottish Women’s Hospital in Serbia, his sister’s death in an Edinburgh hotel fire, and his teaching career in rural Scotland throughout the 1920s. I am looking forward to the challenge.” 


Heather Croft, Jewellery (enamel), Selkirk  

Heather took up enamelling two years ago and will use her bursary to develop her metalworking skills, alongside sharing her knowledge with local young people, working towards a gallery exhibition of new work. 


 Ingrid Bell, Visual art, Edinburgh 

Ingrid will document the unique flora of Shetland, collecting samples of local grasses which she will then use to inspire a series of prints. 


Joyce Davies, Printmaking, Shetland 

Joyce is a self-taught artist, who specialises in monoprinting. Her bursary will see her travel from her Shetland home to Brighton to join East Side Prints for a ten-day residency where she will develop her printmaking skills, run a workshop, and give an artist talk.  


Linda Lewin, Creative writing, Peeblesshire 

Linda will use her bursary to explore her Burmese-Karen heritage as it is woven into the story of modern-day Myanmar. A jeweller and sculptor she will use the bursary to work on her first book ‘Angels With Broken Wings: Myanmar. My Country. My Family. My Hopes And Dreams’. 


Nigel Ashworth, Theatre Director, Edinburgh 

Nigel Ashworth is a writer and director in Edinburgh. His bursary will allow him to work on a professional production for A Play, a Pie and a Pint in Glasgow, assisting Mark Thomson, former Artistic Director of the Royal Lyceum Theatre. He will also work with a mentor to learn more about experimental narrative approaches in drama. 


Sophie Bancroft, Filmpoems, Pathhead 

Sophie is a singer, songwriter and writer who has enjoyed extending the form of her work by incorporating imagery and film with her words and music. Her bursary will allow her to develop more skills for experimenting with filmpoems, including receiving mentoring and training in filmmaking. 

Suzy Aspley, Creative writing, Stirlingshire 

Suzy has gained attention as a crime writer with her debut novel. She will use her bursary to work on her second book featuring her character Martha Strangeways, a former journalist with her own tragic past, who stumbles onto a murder mystery in the Perthshire hills. It will include themes of cyberstalking, environmental threat, women’s rights, and ancient Scottish folklore.