It was a lot of fun counting down to my special day in the Discovery way, with Discovery’s #BeDiscovery social media campaign celebrating the company’s (and employees’) special achievements; conveniently coinciding with my own birthday celebrations (allowing me to pick up some special prizes along the way!).
But this year, the real highlight was that wildlife artist, Pollyanna Pickering‘s summer exhibition opened its doors to the public on my birthday weekend – meaning I was inevitably Derbyshire-bound!
After years of reading about Pollyanna and her work in Wildscape Magazine, I discovered that Pollyanna is a close friend and fundraiser of Born Free Foundation some years ago, and visited her gallery for the first time last year, with special guests Virginia McKenna and Will Travers, as part of Born Free’s 30th anniversary celebrations.
I was blown away with the enchanting, personal feel of the gallery and the unique safari-themed garden surroundings last year, and couldn’t wait to see what Arctic treats were in store for this year’s theme.This year Pollyanna’s art work reflected her time spent living on the ice with natives, under the glow of the Northern Lights. Aside from the odd photo of her being transported by a husky-drawn sleigh, the experience is documented entirely by her paintings of the stunning wildlife that she encountered.
The exhibition gave me much inspiration for my own art exhibition, which I will be holding from the 3rd July, to raise funds for the Born Free Foundation.
Titled ‘A World of Wildlife’, the event is Sponsored by Zebra TM and will consist of a week-long display and sale of work (4th – 10th July) following a launch night with live music, a charity raffle, a bake sale, a tombola and a children’s art competition judged by Born Free Foundation President Will Travers OBE and Animals Actually Founder Cher Chevalier.
I shall be donating all money from sales to Born Free Foundation’s Elephant Sanctuary Appeal to build Europe’s first refuge centre for rescued elephants – a very worthy cause! I’ll let you know how it goes!