A bouquet that never fades…

25 September 2018

I first heard about Hannah at The Custom Botanist when a client showed me the amazing painting she had commissioned of her wedding bouquet. I was completely blown away! It is such a beautiful and bespoke way to keep your wedding alive long after the big day is over. Since then, I’ve seen more and more of Hannah’s commissions and I continue to be amazed at her talent.

Here, Hannah explains how The Custom Botanist came to be, and how you can commission your very own bouquet portrait.

A bouquet that never fades…

The Custom Botanist first bloomed around a year and a half ago. I asked some work colleagues if I could borrow photos of their wedding bouquets as I was intrigued to see what they would look like drawn on paper. After seeing one of my drawings, a friend asked me to immortalise her bouquet and it has grown organically from there. I now get most of my commissions from Facebook and Instagram.

I have always had a passion for art. Having studied art at school and college I went on to get a degree in textiles and surface pattern. I moved from Brighton to London after I graduated and got my first "proper" job working as a Buyers Assistant and later as a Product Developer for some well-known high street retailers. It was a fast-paced office environment and I loved it, but eventually the role became more about spreadsheets and less about working with fabric and patterns.

So, after a move to Manchester with my husband and being made redundant in 2017, I decided I needed a more fulfilling creative outlet. My youngest daughter had just turned three, so I was slowly getting some free time back, and decided to pick up my pencils and paint brush again after a very long break.

My idea of heaven is sitting down on my own and drawing for a few hours. I love flowers and could sit and look at them all day.

I start by drawing the layout, I then spend several hours doing the watercolour stage, then add layers of pencil over the top. The work is mixed media, essentially half painting, half drawing.

Each painting is a one off, and the client has a lot of input in the design process and how the end piece will look. All I need is a photograph to work from. After that, from start to finish, each portrait will take around 20 hours to complete. I email the client regular photos and updates, making sure they are happy with how their piece is developing.

Each and every time I receive an order it's a pinch me moment, and I feel genuinely honoured when someone chooses me to preserve their wedding flowers. The Custom Botanist is a real passion project for me, and seeing how happy my clients are when they receive their final painting fills me with pride. It feels amazing to be drawing again after so many years in an office environment.

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To see examples of The Custom Botanist creations and find out more visit www.thecustombotanist.com. And if you’re planning your big day, visit the Wedding section of our website to find out about our bespoke or package floral creations.