Saturday 22 March 2014

All the info you need to see the RHS pop-up studio

Jessica Shepherd will be demonstrating her work in a pop up studio at the RHS

Friday 11th and Saturday 12th April 2014
10am - 5pm

This Spring I will be setting up a pop-up studio at the RHS London Orchid and Botanical Art Show in the Lindley Hall in Vincent Square, London. I will be on hand to answer your questions whilst demonstrating how I paint. My painting hours will be from 10am - 5pm on both Friday and Saturday.

Swing by and say hello! It would be super to see you!

The RHS show is divided between two halls and your ticket will get you into both. The orchid displays in Lawrence Hall are absolutely stunning and feature displays by some of the best orchid producers in the world. In the Lindley Hall there will be a display of unseen work from some of the world’s best botanical artists, and towards the back is where I will be painting alongside some other great artists (list attached).

You can find out more here:  

Tuesday 18 March 2014

RHS Show Updates

A little update about the RHS show on the 11th and 12th April in Vincent Square, Victoria, London. I am delighted to have just found out that I will be painting with Julia Trickey! This is amazing as I am a big fan of hers. I love all of her leaf work and I really liked the big dried flower series she had on display at the RHS a couple of years ago. Julia has just had a first day cover released of her work by the Royal Mail, and you can see the complete series on both the Royal Mail website and in Gallery 6 on Julia's website.

British postal stamp collection (2014), paintings by Julia Trickey
Julia and I aren't the only artists working live. The talented Ann Swan will also be there, and Liv Healey, Emma Hardicker, Susan Entwistle and Hannah McVicar. Hannah illustrated the first 'Jekkas Herb Cookbook' and she also does a lot of work for one of my favourite magazines - Gardens Illustrated Magazine. I really like her bold screen prints, of which I have put an example for you all to see below. There will also of course be all the medallists on show. The RHS have published a list of exhibitors on their website if you are interested in this bit. I am personally looking forward to seeing this section of the show very much, as the accuracy and presentation of their illustrations is usually out of this world. 

So yes, if you haven't booked your tickets to come and see us, please do! If you book for the PV, you get to come back as many times as you like over the two days and it's cheaper in advance. But please note, that we won't be demonstrating at the Private View - only on the Friday and Saturday.

Star of the Veldt £85 by Emma Hardicker

Tall Bearded Iris £95 by Ann Swan

The Garden Path £600 by Susan Entwistle

 Essence of Spring by Hannah McVicar

Hollyhocks screen print £200 by Hannah McVicar
The exciting canvas work of Liv Healey


Well I am a bit silly as I meant to post this update ages ago. I can't believe a week flew by without me realising. I guess that shows how busy I am?! I am still rather busy preparing for my little demonstration at the RHS on the 11th and 12th April in London and am pretty focused in getting the garden sorted out for the summer. It's amazing what a bit of sun can do to the British! Everyone seems so much happier now all that rain has stopped. What a winter though hey?! Bring on Spring - it can't come fast enough.

So yes, I am keen to tie up a few baggy ends, starting with these tulips. I mainly did these pieces as a practice run and so they have all been painted using different techniques. To be honest they are not masterpieces, but practice pieces, but rather lovely to see nonetheless. The top one has been done mostly in dry brush, loading up the brush with a lot of paint and trying to be bold about it. I started this after seeing the Rory McEwen show and so I stole a few of his techniques and tried to replicate them. It was easier said than done!

The triptych below was started a while back, when I still lived in Kew and really needs sorting out. This has been painted using my usual style of pale washes with dry brush on top. I have to say it was a little odd trying to complete all three of these on the same day - changing my techniques and styles as I moved from one to the other. It was pretty testing, but very good to do - one had to focus. 

Anyway, I felt like I made quite a bit of progress during my one day of painting last week. I have placed a 'before and after shot' so you can see. So I hope that these will be completed before April. I might even get them framed for a summer show I have up my sleeve.

Three Tulips all in a row (work in progress)

Close up on one of the tulips

Tulips on the drawing board!
This is the third painting of the series which is finished.

Friday 7 March 2014

The fabulous work by E V Day

SEDUCERS is a series of high-resolution scans that magnify the reproductive organs of flowers plucked from French impressionist painter Claude Monet’s garden in Giverny.  

E. V. Day spent three months in 2010 as the Munn Artist-in-Residence at The Claude Monet Foundation in Giverny where she spent a  lot of time following the gardeners on their daily pruning rounds, collecting the blooms they’d clipped. The most arresting of these specimens she then pressed in a microwave, scanned digitally, and printed on photo paper at 18 times their original size. Such a simple process, but what a magnificent effect?! The electric, vibrant colours of the flowers in these images are apparently true, but each image has been slightly manipulated by the artist so that half of the image is a mirror of the other, thereby ensuring perfect symmetry.

E. V. Day says that she created these images to transcribe the intimate sensation of being alone in the drama of Monet’s garden when it’s in full-bloom. The saturation and array of colours was so vivid and encompassing she felt as if she was swimming in it. 

I think she has translated this feeling remarkably well through her art work. It makes me wish I was a bee or a beetle.  Beautiful - these prints are utterly and breathtakingly beautiful.

Isn't it gorgeous seeing them all together?! You can see more work here.

Wednesday 5 March 2014

The Art of Cultivating Hope

It is with great joy that I can announce that Amicus Botanicus are holding an exciting exhibition of new work this May.  The exhibition is entitled "The Art of Cultivating Hope" and it will be held at 54 The Gallery, Shepherds Market, Mayfair London W1J 7QX between Monday 12th to Sunday 18th May 2014.

Victoria Cross - Poppy

In this centenary year of the First World War the artists have kindly chosen to support Gardening Leave, a charity which tends to the invisible wounds of conflict by providing horticultural therapy for troubled Armed Forces veterans with mental health issues. 
The artists have produced a collection of paintings of plants suggested by Gardening Leave, some of which held a special meaning for those fighting in the First world War, and others which are of special significance to Gardening Leave in their work.
As well as this special collection each artist will be exhibiting the latest of their own paintings, prints, and cards. Do come along and have a look at their gorgeous work. I went to their show a couple of years ago and I was not disappointed. It's a lovely little space which is conveniently located. It's a good stop for anyone in London and for those who are visiting the city to see the SBA show in Westminster as the dates conveniently coincide.

Exhibition of botanical portraits by Pandora Sellars & Christabel King: Genus Cyclamen

8 February – 30 March


Cyclamen artwork 

The Lindley Library at Wisley is hosting a rare opportunity to see original botanical artworks on loan from The Cyclamen Society. The 25 cyclamen portraits on display feature in the recently published Genus Cyclamen: Science, Cultivation, Art and Culture