Learn the art of botanical illustration. During autumn the garden is a cornucopia of interesting bits and bobs!  There is an abundance of seed heads, dead heads and autumnal fruits to draw and illustrate.

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Come and join enthusiastic botanical illustrators, and an award-winning tutor, and learn how to capture their beauty on paper using coloured pencils. You will be given expert guidance throughout and will be amazed at what you can create with a little help. All materials will be available to purchase, or you can bring your own.

About the tutor

Janie Pirie has had a life-long interest in painting, beginning with painting pictures of the family garden at the tender age of four. She has studied at both the Northampton School of Art and the Colchester School of Art, where she specialised in illustration. Janie became a full-time artist in 2002 and is now concentrates on her beloved floral/botanical subjects as well as portraits using, in the main, coloured pencils.

Janie’s meticulous and striking compositions are given a noticeably subtle touch with her deft coloured pencil work. It is this attribute that gives her pictures the composition, detail and depth of colour that has made her originals, limited edition prints and art workshops so popular.

Janie is a member of the Society of Botanical Artists and in 2008 was awarded a Silver-Gilt medal at the Royal Horticultural Society’s floral art exhibition at BBC Gardeners World Live. She followed that with a Gold medal at the same show the following year, when she was awarded ‘Best Botanical Artist in Show 2009’. A second RHS Gold Medal was awarded to Janie in May 2014 for her studies of roses.

In 2010 her picture of grapes (All Is Safely Gathered In) won ‘Best in Show’ at the UKCPS Annual and in 2011 her amazingly detailed drawing of a Savoy Cabbage won her Runner-up ‘Best in Show’ as well as ‘Best Botanical’ in show. Her drawing of Blueberries won her Runner-up ‘Best Botanical’ in the same show. Following UKCPS shows have seen Janie awarded ‘Best Portrait’ for ‘Clare’ and ‘Best Still Life’ for her depiction of cherries in a bowl with the apt title ‘Life Is Just…..’.

Janie has also been awarded two Certificates of Botanical Merit by the RHS. She regularly runs courses at the Cambridge University Botanic Gardens, Sheffield University Botanic Gardens, the Cumberland Pencil Museum in Keswick and, also in The Lakes, residential courses at nearby Higham Hall, Bassenthwaite.

Janie lives in the beautiful surroundings of the Dedham Vale on the Essex/Suffolk border. She runs art workshops in her garden studio and at other venues around the country and exhibits both locally and nationally.

About Flatford Mill

We have four buildings that are used for visitor accommodation. Whilst most rooms are either en-suite or have a dedicated bathroom, there are some rooms in The Mill that share showers and toilets at the end of the hall. If this is un-suitable for you please make the office staff aware upon booking or as soon as possible. Please be aware that you are visiting a Field Centre that caters in the main for school parties; the accommodation is basic and dormitory style, but warm and comfortable.

Explore our range of botanical illustration courses hosted by our engaging tutors and learn from their expertise and skills. Our art courses are a chance to meet like-minded people, a chance to unwind from everyday life, and a great opportunity to experience the UK’s glorious countryside surrounding our field centres.

  • Janie Pirie illustration of garlic
  • Janie Pirie illustration of squashes

Example Timetable

Arrival Day

Check-in is between 1600-1800, if you are arriving after 1800 please advise us, so we can ensure you are advised of access codes, room key location, and room location.

You will meet the tutor at dinner, and you will have your first session after dinner.

What's Included

Full board accommodation and picnic lunch is available for resident bookings only.
Refreshments are included for all, but non-resident bookings are advised to bring lunch with you.

Before You Attend

What to Bring 

  • An HB pencil – a propelling pencil is best.  0.3 lead is recommended but anything up to a 0.5 is fine
  • Pencil sharpener
  • Plastic rubber
  • Putty eraser
  • Cartridge or sketching paper
  • Tracing paper - 63gsm or less
  • Good quality HP (hot Pressed) art paper
  • A few coloured pencils *

*Don’t buy a small tin of coloured pencils as these will only give you the primary colours.  It’s best to buy a few to suit the subject you choose on the day.  These can be purchased from the tutor.  Most items on the list can also be purchased from the tutor, other than an HB pencil.

Opportunities to attend this course

  • Fri 25, October 2024 19:00 - Sun 27, October 2024 16:00

    Flatford Mill
    £205 - £292
    Janie Pirie
    Pay a deposit of £100.00 per item