SCOTLAND: The Big Picture

Amplifying the case for a wilder Scotland.

There is no doubt that Scotland is a spectacular country, but ecologically speaking it has evolved to become a shadow of its former self. Scotland’s turbulent past has shaped its wild places like few other countries, leaving a legacy of degraded landscapes devoid of the rich vegetation and wildlife that once existed and given the chance, could once again flourish.

It wasn’t so long ago that vibrant forest stretched its fingers across much of the Scottish highlands. Beavers and cranes found sanctuary in extensive wetlands; lynx, wolf and wild boar stalked forest glades. That complex ecological jigsaw may never be fully recreated but a wilder, richer and more resilient landscape can return.


SCOTLAND: The Big Picture is a small team of media professionals – photographers, filmmakers, writers and designers – committed to producing high-impact visual communications, which articulate and amplify the case for a wilder Scotland. Working in partnership with a wide range of organisations and utilising many different media platforms,

The Big Picture team fuse ecological science with inspiring storytelling.

Initially focused on promoting woodland expansion, natural processes and a nature-based economy, over the next 18 months The Big Picture will produce three stunning conservation books, along with commissioned films communicating diverse facets of rewilding from landscape-scale restoration to red squirrel translocation. As well as producing its own outputs, SCOTLAND: The Big Picture will provide a one-stop communications hub for organisations promoting ecological restoration in Scotland.


“The great thing about photography and film is that it has no barriers – it’s accessible to young and old from every cultural background,” says Peter Cairns, the project’s founder. “Visual storytelling also has great emotional power and ultimately, winning hearts and minds is key to the success of changing our relationship with the land and the animals we share it with. Getting to the heart of different people’s belief systems is rarely recognised as important but in my book, it’s crucial.”

In April SCOTLAND: The Big Picture publishes its first book: The Red Squirrel: a future in the forest, which was supported by TENT. Over the coming months the TENT blog will feature a series of wildlife photo-essays supplied by The Big Picture photographers. Learn more here:

All images kindly supplied by SCOTLAND: The Big Picture.

Scotland: The Big Picture – An Introduction from Wild Media Foundation on Vimeo.