Botanical Artist – Watercolour on Fine Art Paper
Australian born, Heidi Willis is an entirely self-taught natural history watercolour artist. Her work illustrates our native and exotic plants, fruits and seed capsules, whilst her powerful, distinctive portraits of Australia’s unique and spectacular bird life offer viewers an insight into the world as she experiences it.
Painting full-time since 2003, Heidi quickly established herself as one of Australia’s leading emerging artistic talents and her international reputation as an exceptional natural history, wildlife artist and botanical artist is well established. Her works can be found in significant public and private collections around the world and are often sold before completion.
In 2004, Heidi had 20 works selected for her first Botanica exhibition in the Sydney Botanic Gardens. Dr Shirley Sherwood purchased her work for inclusion in the prestigious Shirley Sherwood Collection of international contemporary botanical artists.
Producing her first graphite illustrations in 2005, both her works were selected for the Margaret Flockton Award. Hosted by the Royal Botanic Gardens in Sydney, the Margaret Flockton Award recognizes outstanding achievement in scientific botanical illustration and receives international submissions. Heidi won awards for excellence in botanical illustration for her pencil works in 2005 and again in 2006.
She has had two paintings selected for the Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation exhibition in the USA and her works are held in the permanent collection of the University.
Heidi was twice a finalist in the Focus On Nature exhibition, a Natural History Art Prize held in the New York State Museum. The Focus On Nature exhibition was recently placed in the top 10 exhibitions within the capital region. Her Kingfisher painting was selected for the cover of the colour catalogue and exhibition posters and her wildlife illustrations were on exhibition at the Museum for five months each time.
Heidi was recently selected as a finalist for the sixth time in the highly competitive Waterhouse Natural History Art Prize, hosted by the South Australian Museum. She was awarded the Highly Commended prize for the second time for her entry and her work subsequently joined the traveling national tour. This international exhibition is one of the most prestigious, competitive and most sought after art prizes in Australia, promoting and recognizing excellence in natural history art.
Heidi was honoured to be taken on by Australian Geographic in 2015 as a freelance botanical illustrator. Her work is featured in their media and magazine publications on an ongoing basis for all things botanical.
Her work has also been featured in several other publications, most significantly Better Homes and Gardens Magazine, Craft Arts Magazine, Colophon, SA Life, International Artist Magazine and Artist’s Palette Magazine multiple times over, with her work featured on the front cover of Artist’s Palette issue 123 and the front cover again in International Artist Magazine, Issue 111. In March 2017 her work will be featured on the front cover of Australian Artist Magazine, with an additional feature article to be run later in the year.