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Golden Birdwing Butterfly

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Artwork Description:

Title: Golden Birdwing Butterfly

These are paintings of Alfred Russel Wallace’s Golden Birdwing Butterfly specimens, which are part of the Hope Entomology collections at The University of Oxford Museum of Natural History.
The male is flamboyant orange, with the underside being yellow/green. The female is the more subtle brown one at the top. I used watercolour on top of stained paper to create a feeling of old papers; reminiscent of journals and sketchbooks of naturalists of the past.
I love this quote from Wallace upon discovery of this butterfly:
“On taking it out of my net and opening the glorious wings, my heart began to beat violently, the blood rushed to my head, and I felt much more like fainting than I have done when in apprehension of immediate death”.
Wallace was an English naturalist, explorer, geographer, anthropologist, biologist and illustrator. He independently conceived the theory of evolution through natural selection.
Watercolour on paper
Artist Bio:

I am a Derbyshire-based, artist/illustrator and art tutor.

I have a degree in textile design, and a masters from Central St Martins in Communication Design/Illustration.

My inspirations include natural history, explorers and naturalists, Hitchcock films, kitchen sink dramas, ghosts & haunted houses  and Agatha Christie and Daphne du Maurier novels.

I am currently working on a series of Shackleton illustrations which evoke the foreboding atmosphere and historic accounts of the Trans-Antarctic Expedition, as well as developing an idea for a graphic novel inspired by Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier.