ROMANTIC Joel Fagan chose a painting to go on display at Paisley Museum because it shows the exact spot where he proposed to his wife, Jennifer.

Joel Fagan points to the spot on the Loch Etive painting where he proposed

Joel, 24, is a collections assistant at the museum and along with other staff and members of Paisley Art Institute, was asked to select a painting for an exhibition called Random Selection.

When Joel was looking through photographs of paintings owned by the museum and the Art Institute, he couldn’t believe his eyes when he saw a painting of Loch Etive, by artist David Munro from 1872.

And on the bottom right hand corner of the painting he could even see the rocks where his then fiancé was sitting when he went down on one knee and asked: “Will you marry me?”

Joel and his wife, Jennifer on their wedding day

Now that painting will be one of 50 works featured in the free Random Selection exhibition, which opened on Friday, July 7 and runs until Monday, September 25.

Joel Fagan with the painting of Loch Etive, in Paisley Museum

Joel explained how he came to propose marriage two years ago during a trip to the remote Highlands of Scotland:

“We were working in England at the time, but Jennifer always had romantic ideas about Scotland and its scenery and wanted to visit.

‘So, I organised a five-day tour of Scotland and since I already had the engagement ring, planned to pop the question at some point during that holiday.
“We drove five miles down a single-track road to get to the lochside and had a picnic there. The scenery was so stunning I knew this was the right time and place to ask Jennifer if she would marry me.”

Joel continued: “Jennifer was sitting on the rocks – the same ones that you can see in the painting – looking out on to the water when I asked her to turn round. I had the ring in my hand and I told her that I hadn’t just brought her here for a picnic.

“I got down on one knee and asked if she would marry me. It was such an emotional moment that she started crying and said of course she would.”

The couple married earlier this year and now stay in Paisley.

Joel added: “When I was asked to choose some artwork for the exhibition and saw the painting I was shocked. It brought back some incredible memories for me.

“Jennifer can’t believe it either and I’ve no doubt she’ll be a regular visitor to the exhibition!”

Chief executive of Renfrewshire Leisure – which runs arts, culture, sports and leisure facilities locally – Joyce McKellar said: “It’s amazing – and very romantic – that Joel came across a painting that means so much to him and his wife.

“The exhibition features a huge variety of paintings form 16th century religious art to modern contemporary works, so we expect it will be very popular.”