Artists in the Florilegium

The artists that are represented in the Florilegium have demonstrated an exceptionally high level of skill, creating botanically accurate illustrations as assessed by the RBGE panel of experts.

Jenny Bache (Usher)

Born in 1957 I was raised in Cambridge, Nigeria and Aberdeen. I trained as a primary school teacher at Aberdeen College of Education (1974 -77). In 1975 I married Colin Usher and together we moved to Oldham and then West Kirby, Wirral, where we still live with our four children in an award winning Ecohouse, designed by my architect husband. I trained as a Reading Recovery teacher and taught at various schools in Wirral from 1995 to 2019 and from 2000 onwards I have created and designed craft for a local toddler group.

I sold flower paintings through Dee Fine Arts gallery in 1990. I completed the Certificate in Botanical Illustration at RBGE in 2015, followed by the Diploma in 2018.

I exhibited at West Kirby Art Centre in January 2019 and at the Wirral Open Studio Tour in June 2019.

I have always been interested in plants, and at 11 years old my favourite solitary pastime was drawing plants from the woods behind my home in Aberdeenshire. However, I trained as a teacher, had 4 children …. life happened. Through these years I occasionally had time to draw and paint, preferring fungi, flowers and plants above anything else. Then I discovered Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh’s course in Botanical Illustration and realised I needed to be serious about making time for what I have always wanted to do. I have been delighted to spend the last three years focused on completing a Diploma in Botanical Illustration, learning more about the botany and ecology of plants as well as how to paint them. At last my new career is taking shape, and I am enjoying observing and illustrating wonderful plants.

My work is mostly closely observed, to scale, illustrations of plants. I mainly work in watercolour, layering washes to produce depth of colour and fine detail. I also work with coloured pencils, pen and ink, occasionally using acrylic when I need a painting to have dramatic impact, rather than detail.

Sansanee Deekrajang

I was born in Bangkok, Thailand on the 27th June 1980. I undertook a Vocational Certificate, College of Fine Art Bangkok (Major - fine art), followed by a High Vocational Certificate (Major - interior design) and a Bachelors degree in Applied Art (major - printmaking) at Silapakorn University. Bangkok.

I am self-taught on botanical painting, adapted with art skills and curious mind about plants and nature forms.

I have exhibited works at the following meetings / exhibitions:

  • Margaret Flockton Award, Sydney, Australia. Submissions 2012, 2013, 2014
  • Focus on Nature 2012, New York State Museum, Albany New York. USA
  • RHS exhibition 2013, silver medal, London England
  • RHS exhibition 2014 silver gilt medal, London, England
  • RHS exhibition 2016 gold medal, London, England
  • BISCOT, Edinburgh exhibition 2013 silver gilt medal
  • BISCOT, Edinburgh exhibition 2016 gold medal
  • Botanical Art world wide Exhibition: The flora of Thailand, 2018

Sarah Howard (Sherlock)

I was born in 1951 in Cambridge. I completed a Bachelor of Arts degree in African History & Social Anthropology, from the School of Oriental & African Studies, University of London in 1977 and an MSc in  Information Science from City University, London in 1985. I completed the Diploma in Botanical Illustration at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh in 2014.

My career has included working at a Team Builder of a charity, Co. Durham, Proprietor of Highland Coffees (coffee roasting), Illustrator for the Flora of Ethiopia & Eritrea at Addis Ababa University, freelance writing and illustration, Press Officer and Journalist for an international Anglican agency, Archivist for Leakey family, National Museums, Kenya and Researcher and Committee Secretary at the international Anglican agency. I have also done freelance archival work at Rhodes House, Oxford and undertaken research for authors.

My childhood was spent in Kenya, and much of my married life connected with Ethiopia, hence my interest in the East and Horn of Africa.  Alongside paid work I have always travelled with a sketchbook in hand, with a curiosity about the world around me.  This culminated in the opportunity to study for the Diploma in Botanical Illustration.  My ambition is to build on my work as illustrator of the Ethiopian Flora to illustrate in colour flowers in the Horn of Africa for the benefit of local and expatriate residents.  My final work for the Diploma was a set of Aloes, which was painted from fieldwork done in various parts of Ethiopia.

When not living in Scotland, I have lived in Norfolk, where I was Secretary of the Iceni Botanical Artists, and partook of events run by the Institute of Analytical Plant Illustration.  Hill walking gives me an interest in Scotland’s native plants.

Commissions included a set of paintings for the Savill Garden, Windsor; a set of trees for Ditchingham Park, Norfolk;  and single works often marking significant events for various private collectors.

Awards have included RHS, Medals, 2016, 2018 including Gold Medal, BISCOT, 2009, 2015, 2018 Medals including two Silver Gilt, two paintings accepted for the 13th International Exhibition, Hunt Institute, 2010 and a work in the Flora Scotia Worldwide Exhibition 2018.

Publications: Illustrations in Breckland Wild Flowers (Iceni Botanical Artists, 2016), Flora of Ethiopia (1997-2006), Kew Bulletin (2003, 2007, 2009).  Scottish Plant Lore (Kenicer, 2018).  Articles about painting plants in various magazines and journals.   

Nicola Macartney

I am a Scottish artist specialising in contemporary botanical art and illustration. I have a Diploma in Botanical Illustration from the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, graduating with distinction in 2012. I have  won awards from the Royal Caledonian Horticultural Society, the Scottish Society of Botanical Artists and the Royal Horticultural Society.

My work is held in RBGE's Collection of Medicinal Timeline Plants, in private collections and it has also been reproduced for use in books, advertising and interpretation materials.

My work has been exhibited across the UK. Some recent Exhibitions include:

  • Green Gold: Plants from the travels of John Jeffrey, Solo feature at The John Hope Gateway, Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh. 2019
  • Edinburgh Society of Botanical Artists' Exhibition, The Dundas Street Gallery, Edinburgh. 2018
  • Royal Horticultural Society London Plant and Art Fair, Lindley Hall, Westminster, London. 2018
  • Flora Scotia – ASBA Worldwide Exhibition of Botanical Art, The John Hope Gateway, Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh. 2018
  • Scottish Society of Botanical Artists’ The Colours of Nature, Smith Art Gallery and Museum, Stirling. 2017
  • ‘Here we go gathering nuts in May’, Duo exhibition at The Line Gallery, Linlithgow. 2017
  • The Botanical Exhibition, Sawyer Gallery, Inverewe Gardens and Estate, Wester Ross. 2017

I live and work near Edinburgh, Scotland. You can follow my work on Instagram and Facebook

Mike May

Jan Miller

Born in Birmingham I have subsequently lived in Staffordshire, Newcastle upon Tyne, New York State, Glasgow and am now resident in Perthshire.

I worked as a Sociologist and Social Worker, working in Newcastle, Leeds and Glasgow and as a Lecturer at the University of Strathclyde and the Open University. In the 1980's I helped to develop a herbarium whilst doing a social work internship in New York State, and introduced botanical illustration classes to Schenectady Museum. I now facilitate a botanical illustration group with the U3A (University of the Third Age) in Balbeggie, Perthshire.

Alongside my social work there has always been an interest in botanical illustration. I try to dedicate at least part of every week to botanical illustration, exhibiting at the Edinburgh Society of Botanical Artists (ESBA) annual exhibition and with Fusation, a local group of Perthshire artists, this year at The Bield at Blackruthven near Perth. In 2017 I also exhibited at the annual BISCOT exhibition gaining a bronze medal for a series of Geraneaceae paintings. I came to painting not as an artist but through a love of plants. I find painting them a joy and an excuse to spend many hours in their company. In order to develop my skills, I have attended classes in drawing and photography at Glasgow School of Art and many short courses in Botanical Illustration with the Field Studies Council, RBGE and St. Andrews Botanic Garden. In 2012 I painted with an international group of illustrators on a boat on the Amazon in the footsteps of the renowned artist Margaret Mee, a wonderful experience.

Social work and Botanical Illustration may seem an odd combination, but they do complement one another and at different times of my life one has taken precedence over the other. I am happiest in wild environments where there are lots of flowers, and am professionally drawn to areas of large cities where there are social issues that should be dealt with fairly and constructively.

Gloria Newlan

I was born on the 10th April 1946 in Vancouver, Canada and now live and work in Dumfriesshire in Scotland.

In 2014 I completed a Diploma in Botanical Illustration at RBGE and show regularly with Edinburgh Society of Botanical Artists (ESBA). Two of my native plant paintings were selected for The Flora Scotia World Botanical Exhibition in 2018 and were included in the book Scottish Plant Lore: an illustrated Flora by Greg Kenicer (published by RBGE in October 2018). In June 2019, I will have paintings in SBA Plantae exhibition in London and RBGE Florilegium exhibition in Edinburgh.

I am interested in Plant Spirit Medicine and native plants growing in my garden and surrounding area and study their uses for dye and medicine. My other artwork includes Narrative Painting inspired by inner vision and story as well as art journals documenting my travels. I have been working in therapeutic arts with adults and children since 1997 (Drama therapy Diploma), 1998 (PGDip. ED) and 2006 (Counselling Skills for Children, Using the Arts).

Past projects have included printmaking, environmental design, woven artifacts and being a co-worker in multi-cultural arts workshops in museums and schools in Scotland and England. 

I sell works in London and Edinburgh and via the Fine Art America website.

Lizzie Sanders

I have been producing botanical paintings for some thirty years. My work is botanically accurate, painted meticulously in watercolour, using a dry brush technique.

I trained at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art, Dundee and spent many years working in graphic design and advertising in Italy and New York before returning to Scotland. I have lectured in Graphic Design at Dundee, Glasgow and Edinburgh Art Colleges and currently tutor the Diploma Course in Botanical Illustration at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh

I have exhibited work at the RHS Show in London three times and on each occasion was awarded a gold medal. In 2004 I was honoured by the American Society of Botanical Artists, with the Diane Bouchier Award for Excellence. I have two paintings in the Highgrove Florilegium, The Prince of Wales Charitable Trust.

To find out more about Lizzie's work please visit her website.

Narongsak Sukkaewmanee

Born in Thailand on the 28 February 1983 I have a Degree in Fine art from Poh-Chang Academy of Arts and a Masters in Art Education from Chulalongkorn University. I am a member of the SciArt Network in Thailand and a botanical artist of research diversity of Wild Banana in Thailand.

I have exhibited works at the following meetings:

  • The 16th Flora of Thailand Meeting at Kew Botanical Gardens, 7-12 September 2014
  • The Exhibition of Botanical Art at the 19th International Botanical Congress at Shienzien China, 23-29 July 2016
  • Botanical Art Worldwide Thailand Edition at Bangkok Art and Culture Centre, 15-27 May 2018 

To contact Narongsak for sales or commissions please email: maskcy28@gmail.com

Leigh Tindale

I was born in 1960 in Edinburgh and lived in Los Angeles in the USA from 1981 to 2001. I'm now dividing my time between Scotland and California with the contrasting climates offering exposure to a diverse range of native habitat flora and fauna.

Through my work in Textiles, Glass, Surface pattern design, Ancient Byzantine mosaic, Oil and water based painting, the Botanical theme has been a consistent thread woven through each medium and application that my hands have ever crafted.

Career:

  • 1977 - 1979 - North Star Marine - Family Yacht building company. U.K
  • 1984 - 1986 – F.I.D.M - Fashion Design, Los Angeles. U.S.A
  • 1987 - 1988 - Otis Parsons School of Design, Los Angeles. U.S.A
  • 1989 - 1991 - Pogo Bhutan - Knitwear and Textile Design. U.S.A
  • 1991 - 1993 - May Berry West - Surface Pattern Design for Interiors. U.S.A
  • 1993 - 1998 - Freelance Surface Pattern Design for Interiors. U.S.A
  • 2000 - 2002 - Creative development for ‘The Historical Handbook to Scotland’
  • 2004 - Cool Coast - Surface Pattern Design for Interiors. U.K

Courses

  • 2006 - Scuola Arte del Mosaico - Ancient Byzantine mosaic, Ravenna, Italy
  • 2006 - Orsoni Studio - Mosaic Master Course - Venice, Italy
  • 2007 - Stucco Italiano - Marmorino Veneziano plaster technique. U.K
  • 2007 - Scuola Arte del Mosaico - Floor Mosaic Design, Ravenna, Italy
  • 2007 - Institute of Mosaic - Architectural Application, San Fransisco. U.S.A
  • 2017 - RBGE Diploma in Botanical Illustration. U.K

Botanical Exhibitions:

2018 - Dean Gallery. U.K ‘Lunaria annua’ (honesty)

2018 - Flora Scotica exhibiton and two works, Laminaria digitata and Himanthalia elongata (seaweed) were then included in the book Scottish Plant Lore: an Illustrated Flora by Gregory Kenicer (RBGE, 2018)

I am a member of the Scottish Society of Botanical Artists and the Edinburgh Society of Botanical Artists.

I have paintings in Private Collections in Los Angeles, Malibu, San Diego and London.

Sharon Tingey

"Go to nature in all singleness of heart, and walk with her laboriously and trustingly, having no other thoughts but how best to penetrate her meaning, and remembering her instruction; rejecting nothing, selecting nothing, and scorning nothing . . . and rejoicing always in the truth" - John Ruskin.

In my work I have kept this quote from the Ruskin's “Modern Painters” close to my heart. I always strive to capture the individual character of the subject, be it animal, vegetable or mineral, in a way that shows its beauty through truth.

I use watercolour, as a medium of endless variety and subtly, working always towards a perfect balance of clarity and detail, combined with an economy of brush strokes; harmonious yet striking.

The two words which are key to my work are:

Truth; while I might manipulate my subjects to best reveal what is beautiful, interesting or strange, I always show the truth of it.

Character; I always strive to capture the essential character of the subject I am painting.

To contact Sharon for sales or commissions please email: s.tingey@hotmail.co.uk