Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Botanical Artist and Storey Illustrator Beverly Duncan Wins Silver Honors

We love when we have an opportunity to introduce to blog readers to the talented photographers and artists whose work informs the look and personality of every Storey book. Beverly Duncan, whose illustrations have graced the pages of many Storey titles over the years, recently achieved a personal dream and artistic recognition well worth celebrating. Congratulations, Beverly! 

Beverly Duncan is a noted botanical artist and long-time member of The American Society of Botanical Artists whose work recently won silver honors at the Royal Horticultural Society’s Orchid and Botanical Art Show. Entry into this annual London show, put on by the United Kingdom’s premier gardening society, is a competitive two-step process for any artist, and having her art appear in it was one of Beverly’s long-held dreams.

Black Walnut - Juglans nigra
Illustration © Beverly Duncan

Last December, she received word that her work had been accepted.

Sugar Maple - Acer saccharum
Illustration © Beverly Duncan

At the show, held in London this past April, Beverly exhibited a series she began working on in 2012 called  “Winter Branches: Natives of Northeastern United States — Color and Form.” In the Artist Statement that accompanied her pieces, Beverly observed that “there is so much beauty, color, and form to be found if one looks. Focusing on painting winter branches has led to wonderful discoveries of color — reds, maroons, greens and golds, found on the branches, more vivid, perhaps, as these colors stand out from the subtle range of whites, grays and browns of the winter landscape.”

Northern Red Oak - Quercus rubra
Illustration © Beverly Duncan

From the Winter Branches series, Beverly displayed eight pieces in the RHS show, including one called Staghorn Sumac, with its beautiful red fruit cluster.

Staghorn Sumac - Rhus typhina
Illustration © Beverly Duncan

Beverly studied graphic design at the University of California/Berkeley, and children’s book illustration at the Northampton School of Design. Her illustrations have appeared in Storey books including, most recently, Five-Plant Gardens and the forthcoming Saving Container Plants, as well as in several books by Rosemary Gladstar in the Storey Basics® series. She teaches botanical drawing and painting at the Hill Institute in Florence, Massachusetts. Her next session begins in Fall 2014.

This article, written by Renee Rastorfer, originally appeared in The Ashfield News. It has been edited for the blog and shared here, with permission of the author.

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