I posted a photo of my grandfather and his first wife that was taken presumably on their wedding day a few years ago. I’m reposting it along with two more from the family archives.
This photo was definitely taken in a studio setting and judging by their clothing and the way her hair is styled, it had to be a special occasion. Hence, the thought of it being a wedding photograph.
Grandpa Robertson was born in 1856 and married for the first time 20 years later. And yes, that is my grandfather, not great-grandfather or great-great-grandfather.
After looking carefully at the photo for a few minutes, close your eyes and imagine it in full colour, an oil painting of huge proportions… 3 ft by 5 ft or even bigger 4 ft by 6 ft and it’s hanging on a rich oak panelled wall. Can you visualize it in that setting?
That’s where it is in my novel. This is the Laird and Lady of Weetshill on their wedding day. Now, the heroine (Sarah) looks very much like the young woman in the portrait. The hero resembles the young man.
In my novel, the old Laird looks much more like this…
This photograph of an older Grandpa Robertson was taken some time before his death in 1930. I’m thinking maybe between 1915 (the year my grandmother-his second wife) and 1917 (the year my father and four of his nine siblings were admitted to The Orphan Homes of Scotland). By that time, he’d had a stroke with loss of memory and was unable to keep up the farm.
This is how I envision the hero’s grandfather. White-haired, balding, mustache and beard.
The old Laird in my novel also walks with a cane.
And finally this photograph from the archives…
This photo was taken on Angus’s wedding day in Scotland. My father (Robert) was serving overseas with the Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry Highlanders at the time but was able to get leave to go back to Scotland for the occasion. It would have been the last time my father saw his brothers.
Now there’s no mistaking the men in this photo are related but look closely at the young man in the first photo, the old man in the second one and lastly (mostly Robert) the men in this photo. Perhaps, a natural progression of how my hero will age?