Theodore C.F. Brotchie was born in Ceylon in 1878, the son of the Rev. James Brotchie who held a post in Colombo. He was educated in Edinburgh and studied at the Edinburgh Art School. He practised in watercolours, oils, pen and ink, lithography and etching, exhibiting for several years at the Exhibition of the Royal Glasgow Institute of the Fine Arts.
After a spell as a reporter on the staff of the Edinburgh Evening News he moved to the Govan Press as editor, where he wrote The History of Govan in 1905.
In 1908 he left ‘the Press’ for a position on the staff of the Glasgow Evening Times. During this period he wrote an illustrated Saturday afternoon rambles column which was reprinted in book form in 1910 as Some Sylvan Scenes Near Glasgow.
It’s amazing how many of the sites Brotchie sketched turned out to be on PSAs – it’s almost as if he sensed there was some connection between them and couldn’t quite figure out what it was.
In 1919, Brotchie was appointed superintendent of the Glasgow Corporation Art Galleries and Museums, a position he occupied with distinction until he retired. Theodore Brotchie’s books are long out of print, but 17 of his illustrations live on in the pages of Glasgow’s Secret Geometry.
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