New autumnal Red Squirrel watercolour illustration.
Time to celebrate and highlight the plight of one of the Uk's most endearing woodland creatures.
"The red squirrel is the UK’s only native squirrel species and was once widespread across our islands. Red squirrel populations have declined since the introduction of the grey squirrel in 1876, and it is now thought there are less than 140,000 red squirrels left in the wild."- Red Squirrels United.
Red Squirrels Unitedis the biggest ever partnership of academics, practitioners and volunteers working together on a programme of red squirrel conservation. Their work focuses on nine main stronghold areas of red squirrel populations across Northern Ireland, England and Wales. For more information on the Red Squirrel and conservation work, visit http://www.redsquirrelsunited.org.uk
Excited to share a recent illustration commission from Cheshire Distilleries, makers of the iconic Grins Gin. They have a new sister brand, Arrowsmiths Gin, and their first flavour gin to be released is called Ruby Rhubarb! Perfect for all the warm weather we have been having here in the UK, a carefully balanced mixture of English rhubarb and elderflower. 😋
Commissioned to create watercolour botanical illustrations for an editorial piece in Friday Magazine, Dubai. You can read the Flower Power article here The article is about the power of botanicals in beauty products. It's great to see the growing trend of putting more natural ingredients in and on our bodies 💪
I have recently had the pleasure of collaborating on a project for Active Minds, a London based company who create amazing, mindfully designed activity products for people with Dementia. Ben Atkinson-Willes is the founder of Active Minds and shares in the video below his own experiences with his grandfather when he was diagnosed with Alzheimer's. It was the desire to find more creative, less patronizing solutions to help improve the quality of life for people living with dementia that led to Ben founding creative Minds.
"There are approximately 800,000 people in the UK living with dementia, and an estimated 36 million people worldwide. The UK’s rapidly aging population will only continue to increase pressures on the care sector, and families and society more widely. Active Minds hopes that by providing meaningful and engaging activities for nursing and residential homes it will help reduce problems of depression, boredom and isolation so commonly associated with dementia. Our recent social impact report showed that 100% of professional carers and 80% of family members felt the activities improved the quality of life of people with dementia." - active minds
A selection of some of the sketches sent to Active minds before they are signed off and I begin to paint them.
Some of the commissioned watercolour artwork coming together...
I am definitely a strong believer in the therapeutic benefits of connecting with nature, providing positive effects on wellbeing and mental health.
The Active Minds bird book is an engaging and mindful visual guide. Carefully designed to support and encourage people to recognise, observe and identify birds in the garden, on walks, or in the park or countryside. Each bird has been selected because they are visually bold and clear and can also be found in most gardens.
Active Minds have also got a Build and Feed product so you can make your own bird feeders to attract the birds to spot from the book.