After 10 years of publication, 'Northings' (the monthly arts e-magazine for the Highlands & Islands) closed down in 2013 and is archived here. High Life Highland is pleased to enable this extensive body of work to remain accessible to the public. Please note, though, that material will not be updated or added.


Northings is home to a range of lively blogs, from individuals involved in the arts and culture across the Highlands and Islands, including members of the HI~Arts team. From Caithness to Eigg, from poetry and storytelling to audience data and marketing tools, there’s always something fresh to discover.

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Blog by Ian Stephen

Continuing the journey

16 May 2012 in Blogs, Ian Stephen Blog

A strong theme is becoming defined in this Western Isles Libraries Residency.
At our first meeting in Stornoway, the logs of voyages, historical or imagined, led to a range of references to different quests. The near-contemporary “Waterlog” by Roger Deakin linked back to John Bunyan’s “The Pilgrim’s Progress” where an inner journey becomes a sustained parable […]

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Blog by Ian Stephen

A voyage through the School of Scottish Studies

9 May 2012 in Blogs, Ian Stephen Blog

When I set off across The Meadows for George Square, I didn’t realize I was on a voyage back through stages of life and tiers of friendship. There was the Edinburgh Review and former Polygon office. I was mentally back to a meeting there after receiving a letter from one Peter Kravitz saying yes Polygon […]

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Blog by Ian Stephen

Travellers’ narratives Part 2 – some books

3 May 2012 in Blogs, General, Ian Stephen Blog

It was a dirty day outside. I could see line squalls pacing across the harbour. A rope parted on my own moored vessel but no damage was done. I heard the ferry held off for hours till a lull let her dock safely. I remembered that my current job description is Reader in Residence. I […]

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Blog by Ian Stephen

Travellers’ narratives

25 Apr 2012 in Blogs, Ian Stephen Blog

I phoned to make a bank transfer and the person on the other end was chatty, while the numbers were chuntering. Where exactly do you live? she asked. I described the Hebrides as being about 3 hours out, by ferry from the northwest mainland. Now that’s a long way from anywhere I’d know, she said. […]

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Blog by Ian Stephen

Generations of Driftwood

18 Apr 2012 in Blogs, Ian Stephen Blog

I’ve a bit of driftwood that’s built into bookshelves on the upper floor of my house at the harbour. My eldest son, Sean, gave me it. He knows I like to sense the stories behind found timber. He picked this up from Fladda Chuinn, one of the Islands off the near coasts of Skye. He […]

Creative Blogging*

16 Apr 2012 in Aberdeen City & Shire, Argyll & the Islands, Audience Development Blog, Dance & Drama, Highland, Moray, Music, Orkney, Outer Hebrides, Shetland, Visual Arts & Crafts, Writing

Creative Blogs Blogging has become quite the social media phenomenon in the last 2 years. They’re a fantastic tool to be using for both marketing and promoting yourself, your artwork, your organisation, basically anything that you do, or it can also be a brilliant way of putting your thoughts and inspirations down into words, a […]

Whaar is da snaa o fernyear?

10 Apr 2012 in Blogs, Robert Livingston Blog

We spent part of the Easter weekend in Ullapool and, even if there hadn’t been a persistent drizzle of that fine rain that soaks you to the skin, we’d certainly have visited, as we always do, the village’s two excellent—and complementary–bookshops, the Ullapool Bookshop and the Ceilidh Place Bookshop. I firmly believe that the great […]

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Blog by Ian Stephen

Surfing on Stories

10 Apr 2012 in Blogs, Ian Stephen Blog

For the last month, I’ve been surfing on stories. Part of my working week has been working intensively on a novel-in-progress and part has been spent in navigating my way through the Morrison Manuscript – Traditions of the Western Isles. The novel has been on the stocks for about thirty years so I’m reasonably familiar […]

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Blog by Sian Jamieson

What is the Impact of Facebook Timeline?

5 Apr 2012 in Artforms, Audience Development Blog, Blogs, Dance & Drama, Festival, Film, Gaelic, Heritage, Music, Visual Arts & Crafts, Writing

At the end of last month Facebook users saw one of the biggest refurbishments to the social network there has been, since it went global. The introduction of the Facebook Timeline has created a lot of controversy, as we all grapple with the changes to the design features of the site, while trying to continue to engage with our fans. Some love it, other’s hate it. But what kind of impact is this having on our pages and their abilities to connect with Facebook users?

Profile photo of Ian Stephen

Blog by Ian Stephen

Reader in Residence

3 Apr 2012 in Blogs, General, Ian Stephen Blog

This is one of 5 Reader in Residence posts throughout Scotland. These are part of the Creative Futures project, funded by Creative Scotland, developed and administered by Shetland Arts Trust. They range from the poet Jen Hadfield’s post with Shetland Libraries to Maureen Sangster’s residency at a mental health facility. My own project has been […]

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