'Jessica Rosemary Shepherd - Botanical artist and much more' By Morgyn Phillips
NatureArt Lab recently hosted a two-day workshop with well-known UK botanical artist Jessica Rosemary Shepherd. With a focus on creating 'larger than life leaves', a group of 15 artists explored the possibilities of creating drama with use of light - giving the plant center stage. Jess inspired us with her ideas about where botanical art might go in the 21st Century. Jess’ artistic projects, whether art-based, soundscapes, media or publishing ventures, explore an evolving philosophy to do with botanical artistic expression and ‘how the strategies and techniques of the visual arts can be adapted to communicate the importance of plants in the modern world’. She spoke about combating ‘plant blindness’ and using art and other mediums to focus attention on the natural world. Her work is both profoundly personal and political, environmental and cultural.