Scotland's new Culture Strategy will not be dictated by the government, the culture secretary has declared.

Fiona Hyslop, speaking at an event in Paisley as part of the consultation process for the new strategy, also said one of the many areas the strategy would have to address is the precarious economic lives of freelances in the arts world.

Ms Hyslop seemed to attempt to allay fears the new strategy, part of the SNP's manifesto and programme for government, would be imposed by ministers.

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She said: "It is not a state view on culture.

"Its intention is to support and work for culture, and Scotland more broadly, to build from the expertise and experience across the culture sectors, and to learn from other areas."

The Paisley event followed a private event for artists and arts companies in Glasgow, and was the first of a series of culture conversation events which will help shape the strategy.

Ms Hyslop, who was also in the town to help back its City of Culture bid, added: "Artists and other freelancers too often experience challenging working patterns and uneven rates of pay.

"There are still too many instances of freelancers being expected to work for very little or for free.

"And for some, a freelance career is simply unsustainable unless they have some other means of support."

The precarious nature of freelance and low-paid work in the arts world is also a concern of Creative Scotland, the national arts funding body.

Creative Scotland has said it now committed to "exploring ways to improve artists pay, living and working conditions".

Ms Hyslop added: "The status of the cultural workforce and ways to improve their economic and social position is something that I am interested in exploring as the strategy develops.

"Without the ideas and contribution of artists and creative people we are all poorer.

"It is artists who often think in ways that are beyond our current understanding of the world and we as a society should recognise and value that insight and creative expression."