I am Nathalie & this is my current journey.
I am a French expat living in Scotland for the past 25 years.
My interest of botanical illustration came from reading herbals originally whilst I studied plant medicine & pharmacology. I was fascinated by the overlooked nature of plants & the minute amazing details held within them. Even as a child, I was always covered in mud in my mum's potager garden & had my own wild flower meadow there.
I studied botany & for years walked around with a book recording my finds in verges, fields, road sides. I pressed the specimens at the time. This earned me the Nigel Wynn award for best dissertation project.
Later on I did my first evening class with RBGE on botanical illustration (BI). I was absolutely fascinated but also slightly intimidated because I felt clumsy & lacked painting experience.
Due to personal circumstances, I was unable to return to BI for a very long time. I did however continue to paint here and there. I even took a paint box with me on my honeymoon in Madagascar & painted a Coral hibiscus.
2019 was a very difficult year for me & in May a very dear artist friend of mine came to visit me. She mentionned that I should be focusing on the painting. I did not take her seriously but from that little seed that she planted in my head, I started thinking about it & investigated many different courses, mediums & painting styles. I kept coming back to BI.
I then applied & got a place on the online RBGE certificate in October. The following month, I had a stroke due to stress.
It was only a minor stroke but it was enough of a scare to make me really focus. I graduated from the course with distinction in March 2020.
I then took a course on 'fine details & finishing techniques' with Jackie Isard. I think above all, this is the course that really changed everything for me. It gave me a vast amount of confidence & skills. Jackie is not only a friend & amazing artist but she is probably the best tutor I have ever had. Her feedback was so detailed that I was able to really see where I was going wrong, how I could enhance my skills etc. I finished this course with a distinction also.
I now have 3 paintings exhibited at the Frames gallery in Perth Scotland in September & I am absolutely delighted. I hope to continue on this path as I have fallen in love with it.
I am currently fascinated by seed pods & wilting/wilted flowers.
Above is a painting of a Douglas fir pine cone (Pseudotsuga menziesii)
Painted using watercolours on Saunders & Waterford HP White 300gsm paper. Dimensions 38*28 cm. The pine cone has been magnified x2.5.
I am also on Instragram under @nwallace_art
Iris Germanica seed pod head, magnified x3 painted on Saunders & Waterford High White HP 300gsm paper. Medium watercolour. Dimensions 38*28cm
Cyclamen persicum study 1:1. Painted on Saunders & Waterford 300gsm HP White . This was my study for the RBGE BI Certificate. Dimensions 38*56cm. Medium Watercolour.