The real picture.

I've been stalking my mail person. I don’t know if they noticed. Probably not, there is a variety of delivery people coming around lately. But if it was just one, I think my behavior would be considered a bit intense. Waiting next to the mailbox, grabbing the mail right out of their hands, asking if he/she is sure nothing is forgotten while trying to snoop around in the mailbag…..

Why? You may ask yourself...

Well, it started with a picture I posted on Instagram on the 29th of July 2020. The picture you see above this story, the red seaweed, and little green urchin. It was taken on the east coast of Scotland on the Ness of Tarbat peninsula, near the lighthouse in the summer of 2019. I love that picture, it is sooooo pretty. 76 people thought the same thing and liked my feed. Chris Osborn was one of those people. I know Chris Osborn, he is my first ever follower of my blog, and made the remark that it would be fun to paint this picture one day.....

Oh yes, the sweet angel of inspiration passed by Chris. She captured his mind and left him with itchy fingers until he does something with that buzz. Some images are like that, I know. Sometimes inspiration pushes you to do something immediately or just a bit later. But she never really leaves you, she just lingers in the back of your mind, waiting to be used.

On the 12th of October 2020, I see this feed in my Insta feed….

How cool is that!!! The angel of inspiration struck Chris very hard, and it made him paint this beautiful picture. It’s a miniature, just look how lovely the seaweed looks like it’s as wet and slippery as the real thing. How much attention to detail, all the little bumps on the urchin. Like you can pick it right off the picture.

It's wonderful how a Scottish coastline picture taken by a Dutch girl can inspire an Australian guy. How small the world is with all the possibilities of social media!

Just imagine how gobsmacked I was when Chris wrote that he was making prints of the painting and he was going to send me one. Oh boy, I felt, and still feel, so honored, so grateful, so amazed, such a warm feeling in my heart. So I DM-ed my address details. And on the 18th of January Chris informed me that he sent the picture.

There was a new spring in my step every time I walked to the mailbox. How long does it take to send something from Australia to The Netherlands? I don’t know. I’m used to slow-travel, I can be patient…..I think….

I practiced patience until the beginning of February when Chris DM-ed me with the question; ’Why is your present stuck in The Haque for a week now?’

‘Eeeuh, I don’t know?.......’

That is how I developed the stalking behavior. Worsening over time. Not having any sympathy for the lockdown and a full week of snow and ice and 15 degrees frost and no mail was delivered because of the slippery conditions. Calling my sister to see if she was able to see what's going on with the postal service. She couldn't see what was up.

Being at home during the lockdown, I stalked my mail person just a bit more intensely.

Until….. In a moment of non-stalking (I was working). Alexander walked in with a big envelope. Oh yes, oh yes, it finally arrived!!!

Tearing open the envelope to find the print perfectly packed, and no damage anywhere. DM-ing Chris immediately to let him know. All it needs is a good frame! Just my luck, getting something this beautiful and not having a suitable frame. And during the lockdown, everything is closed!!  I need to spraypaint my white frame black, it suits the print better. But this damned weather...Too cold for a spraypainting session in the garden. It was like the weather finally took pity on me, spring came….

And now the print hangs over my workspace in my living room. Everybody can see it when I’m in a teams-meeting or teaching my students. I can tell everyone about how a picture can inspire someone on the other side of the earth to make a painting and sent it to me. The angel of inspiration and generosity might just strike someone else too….You never know…

Thank you, Chris Osborne. I will cherish your gift forever.

If you are curious about Chris Osborne and his art, check out his website by clicking the link. Here you can read about his story behind the picture!!!

Charlotte Gannet.


  1. Chris Osborne on 7th March 2021 at 12:11

    Thank you for such a good story and linking to my website.
    Just because I like all the small details Osborne has an “e”on the end lol

    • All Exclusive Cruises on 7th March 2021 at 12:31

      Hi Chris, I enjoyed writing it, and linking to your site is my pleasure. I will correct the name right this minute. Thank you for the tip!!

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