The Scottish artist behind St Andrew's Google Doodle

Google Doodle Image copyright Google
Image caption The image greeted visitors to the search engine on Thursday

Internet searchers across the country have been delighted by a Scottish-themed Google Doodle to mark St Andrew's Day.

The graphic featuring a unicorn, the saltire, bluebells, thistles and a Loch Ness monster was drawn by Johanna Basford.

The Aberdeenshire artist is known for her intricate adult colouring books.

She has even shared a downloadable version of the picture people can colour in at home.

The search engine donned its virtual kilt for St Andrew's Day with the home page graphic design.

Ink evangelist

The company chose a Scottish designer to celebrate the country's national day on their daily Doodle.

Johanna Basford, from Aberdeenshire, describes herself as an "ink evangelist" and is said to be a pioneer of the adult colouring book trend.

Her intricate work can be seen on books, wallpaper, beer labels and even tattoos.

Her first adult colouring book, Secret Garden, was published in 2013.

She was awarded an OBE in the 2016 Birthday Honours list for services to art and entrepreneurship after selling more than 20 million books worldwide.

Ms Basford announced her latest creation on Twitter saying: "The pixels at Google UK are looking a little inky today!

"To mark St Andrews day, Google asked me to create a very special Google Doodle that celebrates all things Scottish, so I picked up my pens and pencils and created this for them."

She even shared her daughter's delight at the use of her favourite creature, the unicorn.

The official description from Google for the image is: "A procession of beloved Scottish symbols, each with a special link to the country's rich heritage and mythology

"Wreathed in the prickly-leaved purple thistle, the unicorn (Scotland's national animal) leads the parade, symbolizing innocence, purity, power, and joy.

"The highlands and the lochs form the perfect backdrop to the country's favourite mythical monster — Nessie, otherwise known as the Loch Ness monster.

"Trailing her is a majestic red deer, Scotland's largest native land mammal, exploring the country's much-celebrated bluebell woods."

Image copyright Google
Image caption An early sketch of the hand-drawn illustration

Ms Basford is now keen to see what the public does with her design. She has posted a downloadable version on her website and said: "There's a splash of saltire blue, but I think it needs more colour… over to you!

"I can't wait to see your colourful creations."

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