'˜Goth on the Croft' charity calendar launched
A new 'Goth on the Croft' charity calendar has been inspired by one woman's move to the Outer Hebrides.
Dr Claire Gerrard and her friends have pulled on their best PVC, cloaks and black makeup to promote tolerance of sub cultures and minority groups while celebrating society’s ‘black sheep’.
Dr Gerrard, a software developer and singer who also goes by the name of Spectra Vox, relocated from Aberdeen to Lewis two years ago.
While her experience have been a positive one, she said her new setting had further highlighted her differences.
She said: “I really did feel I was walking into a place where there wasn’t many of me. When I saw the black sheep in the fields, I could identify! I stood out a mile.
“I came up with the idea of Goth on the Croft and it really represented what I wanted to say. In any setting in life you have people who are incongruous to their surrounds.”
The calendar will raise money for the Sophie Lancaster Foundation which was set up following the 2007 murder of the 20-year old who was attacked in a park in Lancashire while walking with her boyfriend.
The couple both identified as being Goths with police believing this may have motivated the attack.
Dr Gerrard, 38, added: “What happened to Sophie Lancaster was incredibly harrowing. You look back on your own experience and think how it could have happened to you or your friends. I am definitely not a stranger to intolerance.”
Despite the serious message, Dr Gerrard said there was humour in the photographs and that she wanted people to be entertained by the calendar.
She recalled how she left her house in Lewis in her PVC mini dress and thigh high boots - carrying a cup and saucer - to be photographed with some sheep near Loch Orinsay.
“I had to follow the sheep until they stood still, which took a while. The odd car did slow down and people had a good look.
“The thing is, I just really don’t care about that anymore. The whole thing about being a goth is having the freedom to be who you are. You should never be scared to do that.”
Other shots were taken at Crathes Castle near Banchory and Doonies Farm at Nigg, near Aberdeen.
The calendar is available to buy from www.etsy.com.