Are you sitting comfortably?

I’m perched on a high wooden stool that a dear friend bought for me when I moved in, in a vast drawing room where I work. The stool is now caked with splashes of paint. To my right, there’s a tall desk which has useful wire trays for paint brushes and rags and my tea mug which says "Turps" and MacBook sit inconveniently close to a palette of wet oil paints and a vase of freshly cut flowers – tiger lilies with a pungent scent of honey, drooping peonies and superstar roses – from my mum’s garden.

To the left of my window lies a succession of easels in various sizes, each with paintings I am currently working on. One of them is a new addition, a gift from a collector and friend. It is the late Jim Gorman’s last easel, so an honour to work on. Behind the easel is my bookcase, filled with poetry books and ceramic pieces and a few postcards by favourite artists like Richard Deibenkorn and Michael Kennedy.

I’ve recommissioned a 1970s hostess trolley as my mixing desk, and from
here, I can also see the small kitchen – sometimes I bake scones in between priming canvases.

What’s the view like?

An array of wonderful shades of green from the trees intermingled with fuchsia and flaming red from the rhododendron bushes through in the park beyond. I’m on one of the main streets which lead through Dowanhill to Byres Road so lots of people walk past, going about their day. There are some interesting characters and a resident cat.

Opposite is a newly restored church, which looks rose-tinted on dewy summer mornings. Beyond the narrow street, I can see private gardens, so lush and green just now. It is pretty at night and in the winter, you can see right through to the house at the other side.

Favourite place nearby?

The private gardens are so restful considering you are so close to the bustle of Byres Road. It is a quiet space for contemplation amongst beauty which is nourishing and sustaining. The Botanics are a treat on hot summer days when they become a sea of wonderful colours. And I love Cotton Rake Bakery with its "Doughnut Repairs" neon sign in the window by David Shrigley.

Perfect night in?

The perfect night in would be spent with someone to read with and a hot brew, some soothing music – perhaps Chopin’s Nocturnes. Cake would be good!

Last thing you bought for your home?

A book of Poems by Katherine Tower called The Remedies. I love her poem The Roses, which reminds me to pay attention to the smaller things in life. Even though I am working on a series of abstract works just now I still love to be with, and paint, flowers. I find it as affirming as I find painting to be necessary.

If I didn’t live here, I’d want to live in ...

I sometimes imagine what it would be like to awake every day to paint in my studio if it was in Paris, New York, Copenhagen or Amsterdam. It would be tempting to move but Glasgow is so well set up for artists. The people of Glasgow are tops.

Alison McWhirter’s upcoming Glasgow shows include a two-person exhibition with Ryan Mutter at Arteries Douglas Street from September 1 to October 1; a two-person exhibition with Peter Royle at Lemond Gallery from October 1 to 9 and a two-person studio show with Stephen Skyrnka at 24 Huntly Gardens in November.

Interview: Ann Wallace