Amicus Botanicus

Shirley Simon

I have always had a passion for the natural world, particularly botany, and my working life has been devoted to the teaching and appreciation of science.

By atist, Shirley Simon

I began my career as a secondary teacher of science and after a few years was awarded a scholarship from King’s College London to carry out research for a PhD in Science Learning. I am now retiring from 35 years in academia, currently as a Professor of Science Education at University College London.

I took up watercolour painting in 2003, at first attending weekend courses on landscape painting with the Field Studies Council. I branched out into botanical painting and became hooked on painting plants, particularly flowers.

While visiting the Society of Botanical Artists show in 2014 I saw an advertisement for the diploma course at the Chelsea School of Botanical Art. I began the course the following year, eventually graduating in 2018. I like to grow flowers to paint in my garden, and to share my passion for botany with young people.

I have a home in the Isle of Wight and I am now a member of Ventnor Botanical Artists, who meet at the Ventnor Botanic Garden and exhibit regularly on the Island.

I also travel to Devon and Cornwall to paint with members of the South West Society of Botanical Artists and the Eden Project Florilegium Society.

By atist, Shirley Simon