Illustration Collaboration 13

In a series of posts, we are delighted to share the artworks that third year Edinburgh College of Art illustration students created in response to texts by our Citizen Writing Group.

The Unwelcome Visitor by Maureen Baker

There was a scrapping noise coming from the chimney as I entered the room. Small particles of soot and debris fell onto the hearth. There must be something up there, but I quickly left the room and closed the door.

As the day progressed I decided to go back and investigate. I heard nothing, so switched on the TV. This prompted the scrapping, and more bits tumbled down the chimney. Was the noise from the TV frightening whatever was trapped in there? I quickly left the room, closing the door tightly behind me. Luckily my grandson was at home, so he got himself kitted out in combat gear Goggles, in case the unknown went for his eyes, large gauntlets in case it tore his hands when he grabbed it.

Flora Luckman

By now it was evident that it was a bird. Somehow it had managed to find its way down the chimney and was flying frantically around the room, occasionally bashing itself against the window in a bid for escape. The door was opened slowly and the rescue began. The crow was quite distressed by now, not realising that the rescuer was equally petrified. I was in the hallway and could hear the explicits followed by a calming voice as the crow continued flying around the room.

Finally the two co-operated and the crow was caught in a large towel. There was no struggle and soon the crow was released outside and flew off to freedom. They say crows recognise human faces, so I hope this one is kind to us in the future. Some would say a crow is a sign of death… surely not in this instance. Another theory is that a life change or time of transition is ahead… that is more appealing to me, as long as it is a change for the better.

Whatever… the crow is now free to join its murder of crows and life goes on. Since that experience I have often seen crows sitting on the chimney pots and wonder if one of them is the one that invaded my living space.

Frantiska Jiraskova


We are extremely grateful to the Third Year Illustration students at Edinburgh College of Art, and Harvey Dingwall for making this collaboration possible. The Citizen Writing Group is part of Citizen, our flagship communities project which is supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery and through the PLACE Programme (funded by the Scottish Government, City of Edinburgh Council, and the Edinburgh Festivals, and supported and administered by Creative Scotland).

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