Sturgeon reveals 2017 First Minister's Christmas card

It features an original painting by Scottish artist and playwright John Byrne.

Christmas card: Designed by artist and playwright John Byrne.

Nicola Sturgeon has revealed her 2017 First Minister's Christmas card.

It features an original painting by Scottish artist and playwright John Byrne called Say it With a Kiss.

The painting will be auctioned for charity next year, with proceeds going to four charities including Scottish Women's Aid.

Revealing the card on Tuesday, Sturgeon said: "I'm absolutely thrilled to have such a beautiful painting by John Byrne for my Christmas card this year.

"He is one of our most celebrated artists and this work has a wonderful festive feel while maintaining John's inimitable style.

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"The four charities that will benefit from the sale of the painting do fantastic work on local, national and international levels and I'm very pleased that the card can support such a wide range of good causes."

Byrne said he was "surprised and delighted" to have been asked to design the card.

"I got to work straight away," he said.

"I had a notion to paint a young couple from my boyhood days in Paisley, having a great time jiving to the music of Jimmy McCracken's Big Band at the town hall dressed in the style of the day, with a nod to the festive season."

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The First Minister appeared alongside Scottish comic icon Oor Wullie on last year's card.

Sturgeon also chose a popular children's character in 2015 when she picked a design featuring Katie Morag.

Former First Minister Alex Salmond took a different approach in 2013 by commissioning Scottish artist Jack Vettriano.

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