Lightbulb moment for launching my art career? I think the lights were flickering for a long time but I wasn't brave enough! I’ve always loved drawing and painting since I was tiny, but things took off in London with a Technology Sales career, then children came along, so there was precious little time to develop my talent. When we got pregnant with son number three, I knew I wanted to rebalance my career with my family life, plus I’d felt an undeniable, growing ache to reconnect with my creative side. It was now or never; I don't believe you should wait for retirement to follow your dreams.
My style is very detailed, plus I was increasingly drawn to nature subjects, so it occurred to me that there was a great fit with botanical art as a specialism because it demands technical rigour and scientific accuracy. I like how it mashes my artistic side with the analytical skills I've developed in my previous career. Botanical art is thriving, probably due to the “eco” zeitgeist, plus a renewed appreciation for plants and the outdoors in relation to physical and mental health.
I've always wanted to master watercolour as a medium because my dad is a big collector of Victorian watercolours and I’ve grown up with their glowing colours and sense of light, even 200 years on. My grandmother travelled a lot and loved her portable W&N watercolours.
In 2019, I applied for the Society of Botanical Artists' challenging Diploma, a 2.5 year distance learning course which teaches the many conventions of true botanical art, from how to dissect and label a subject, to composition and colour-matching. I was overjoyed to graduate with Distinction in June 2022.
PLANTAE’2022, The Society of Botanical Artists’ international exhibition in June, was the first time I’ve exhibited in public. Three of my artworks were chosen. My graphite study of a Romanesco won a coveted Certificate of Botanical Merit (CBM), which recognises outstanding, accurate botanical work, as well as the Award for Excellence in Graphite.
My work has been purchased by private collectors and I’ve accepted a number of commissions. I’m growing my online print shop for open and limited editions, as well as trying out some retail spaces, exhibitions and fairs.
I’m excited for the future and welcome all opportunities for work!