Scotland loves a ghost. The country has all the key ingredients necessary for the creation of rumours that are whispered in the corridors and passed across the campfire. The dark skies, darker history, dark minds, old towns and ancient folklore all pitch in to the bubbling cauldron of endless experiences.
Scotland has been proclaimed one of the most haunted countries on Earth. The big question will be - is the folklore demonstrably? Or will it remain a big myth? Get on the first flight over and you will find out.
Quick tales about the city:
Edinburgh is the capital city of Scotland, situated on the southern shore of the Firth of Forth. With a population of 495,360 in 2011 (up 1.9% from 2010), it is the largest settlement in Lothian and lies at the centre of a larger urban zone of approximately 850,000 people. While the town originally formed on the ridge descending from the Castle Rock, the modern city is often said to be built on seven hills.
From its prehistoric roots as a hillfort, following periods of Celtic and Germanic influence, Edinburgh became part of the Kingdom of Scotland during the 10th century. With burgh charters granted by David I and Robert The Bruce, Edinburgh grew through the Middle Ages as Scotland’s biggest merchant town. By the time of the European Renaissance and the reign of James IV it was well established as Scotland's capital. The 16th century Scottish Reformation and 18th century Scottish Enlightenment were formative periods in the history of the city, with Edinburgh playing a central role in both. While political power shifted to London following the Treaty of Union in 1707, with devolution in 1997 the city has seen the return of a Scottish parliament.
Edinburgh has a high proportion of independent schools, one college and four universities. The University of Edinburgh (which now includes Edinburgh College of Arts) is the biggest university in Scotland and ranked 21st in the world. These institutions help provide a highly educated population and a dynamic economy. Edinburgh has the UK's strongest economy outside London and was named European Best Large City of the Future for Foreign Direct Investment by fDi Magazine in 2012/13.
One thing is clear, Scotland is great for photography. Here you can choose between the wild city life, or the stunning wildlife of mountains and lakes, or even both.
Most people know that television, telephones and penicillin were invented by Scots, but did you also know the first colour photograph was taken in Scotland?
Appropriately enough, Scottish inventor James Clerk Maxwell took a picture of tartan ribbon when he tested his colour photography theory back in 1861. Using red, blue and green filters he successfully took a full colour picture, although the results were said to be a little disappointing.
A history of breakthroughs
This wasn't the first time a Scot had pioneered new photographic techniques. In 1842, just three years after the very first photographs were taken in France and England, a Scottish medic and university lecturer took the first calotype portrait in Scotland. Calotype was the first photographic process to use a negative image to produce more than one print.
Throughout the 1800s Scottish photographers pushed the art of photography to new technical and creative limits. Thomas Annan famously recorded the slums of Glasgow in what is considered to be the first use of photography as social record. Meanwhile other Scots took their skills abroad to record major events such as the American Civil War and the Crimean War.
From invention to artform
The twentieth century saw the creation of Scotland's first photographic gallery and both the Glasgow School of Art and Edinburgh College of Art established Fine Art Photography departments. St Andrews University, home of photographic pioneers Sir David Brewster and the Adamson brothers, became an internationally renowned centre for the history of photography.
Famous photographs & photographers
There have been many famous Scottish photographers and equally as many photographers from elsewhere who have photographed Scotland, inspired by it's landscapes and people. Take Paul Strand for example, an American photographer whose pictures of the community on the island of South Uist in 1954 went on sale for up to £18,000 in 2006.
Harry Benson, a native Scot photographed some of the most famous people in the World including the Beatles, every US President from Dwight D Eisenhower to Barack Obama, Martin Luther King junior in Mississippi in 1966 and covered the aftermath and devastation of both 9/11 and Hurricane Katrina. His lens captured the cruel story of the first American to be killed in Bosnia and the fall of the Berlin Wall. Awarded with a CBE in 2009, Benson's career spanned over five decades and its fair to say he captured the essence of the times he photographed.
And new Scottish photographers come forward all the time along with many enthusiastic amateurs who come to Scotland to take their own pictures of the famous lochs, highlands and monuments which make our country such a wonderful location for artists of all kinds.
The city is filled with corners, peoples, happenings that certainly will catch your interest. One thing is sure, you will never walk alone. So make sure your battery has 100% capacity, enough memory cards, and of course pre mount the correct lens for a session of street photography:
Underneath you find some tourist street snapshots by me from the great city of Edinburgh Scotland.
Whether it is your first time in Edinburgh or you have visited the city before, there is always something new going on, remember this city has always something for everyone either it is to to settle for a evening in a restaurant which offers traditional Scottish produce, or hitting the streets for some retail therapy. So pack your bags and the your arse over for a visit.
I am providing a larger gallery of street photos from Edinburgh, Scotland on my website tab named Scotland. Please feel free to visit.