Penny Brown



Penny has always worked as a professional artist. She trained as a theatre designer and designed scenery and costumes for productions all over Great Britain. Simultaneously her oil paintings of shop fronts and formal gardens sold at the Portal Gallery in London’s Bond Street. Gradually she focused more on illustration – first craft and lifestyle books, then gardening, natural history and design source books and has worked for many publishers, including DK, Liberty’s, Reader’s Digest, Lorenz Books, Guild of Master Craftsmen, David and Charles, and Search Press. Her work has appeared in over 75 books, including How to Draw Garden Flowers published by Search Press.

Her love of portraying the natural world led her to enroll on the SBA Distance Learning Course in 2009. She graduated with a Distinction and won the Award for Excellence. She is now a Fellow of the Society and a tutor on the course, where her best-selling book, ‘Botanical Drawing – A step-by-step guide’ (Search Press 2018), is a set text.  She also leads botanical drawing workshops.

Penny works in watercolour, graphite and coloured pencil, creating images that are botanically accurate and visually pleasing.  Her prize-winning collage work involves cutting and layering plain papers in a complex, subtle way to achieve an effect reminiscent of 1930s silk screen prints, but with strong contemporary appeal. The natural world and particularly the glorious Dorset countryside is a constant source of inspiration which she loves to share.

She exhibits regularly in London and the South-West, including in her Dorset studio, and she is represented by The Gallery at Sculpture by the Lakes, Dorchester.  Her work has been shown in Frankfurt and Madrid, and in 2014 her painting ‘Grape Hyacinth’ was loaned to the Museo Centro de Gaias in Santiago de Compostela.

Her most recent book, ‘Paint 50 Flowers in Watercolour’ has just been published by Search Press and is a beginner’s step-by-step guide to flower painting.

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