Award-winning writer and illustrator Ed Vere was announced as Born Free’s Artist in Residence in January 2019.
Ed is a New York Times bestselling writer and illustrator of picture books. His books have been published around the world in over 20 languages. How to be a Lion was nominated for both The Greenaway Medal and The Carnegie Medal – almost unprecedented for a picture book.
Ed has exhibited his paintings internationally, showing in London, Cape Town, New York, Tokyo, Reykjavik, Los Angeles, Stockholm and Amsterdam, amongst many others.
As Born Free’s Artist in Residence, Ed has travelled to Kenya to learn about our work to protect lions in Amboseli and Meru; exploring the landscape, writing about and painting lions in their natural habitat, and understanding the lives of the local people they live alongside. His work will be presented in a special book, which will be published in 2020.
“A painted and written travelogue, a journey of discovery, it will discuss issues around freedom, conservation and what we can do to create a world in which wildlife thrives, rather than perishes.” – Ed Vere
Images © Neil Wray / www.whitehat-seo.co.uk
Gary Hodges is the UK’s best-selling pencil artist, having sold over 110,000 personally signed and numbered wildlife art prints from 135 different drawings.
As a great supporter and longstanding patron of Born Free, as well as many other wildlife and environmental organisations, Gary has raised over £1m for charity by auctioning his unique artworks at special fundraising events.
In 2016, Gary’s Heart and Soul exhibition, held at London’s Mall Galleries, was a sell-out event, raising over £133,000 at the opening night auction for Born Free and Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA). In 2018, Gary’s Love and Protection exhibition, held in Gloucester, raised £44,000 for six wildlife charities, with £7,000 donated to Born Free.
“Quite simply, I have been a devoted admirer of Gary's work for over 25 years. His unique talent, and his profound sensitivity to the animals' character and individuality, create images that are unbelievably beautiful and evocative.” – Virginia McKenna OBE
Images © Alan Strutt / www.whitehat-seo.co.uk
Sherree Valentine Daines is Britain’s leading modern impressionist painter. She has exhibited works at the Tate Gallery, the Barbican, the Royal Society of British Artists, the Royal Institute of Oil Painters, and her work is held in many distinguished private collections around the world.
She has generously supported Born Free for many years, donating a number of original oil paintings, to be sold in aid of our wildlife conservation work. Sherree has painted several of these original artworks live on stage at Born Free events. Her unique ability to capture the essence of an animal within a short space of time, enthralled audiences at our Beyond the Bars and Wind of Change gala events in 2017 and 2019.
“I have been a fan of Born Free for nearly 30 years. The work that Virginia, Will and the team do for the survival of threatened species; their efforts to protect animals against cruelty; and the kindness they have shown, is a real inspiration to me. I’m so proud to be able to support their work.” – Sherree Valentine Daines
Wildlife painter Emma Bowring lives and works in Devon. She uses oil on canvas to produce exquisitely realistic portraits of wild animals, and has donated a number of original works to be auctioned at Born Free events.
In 2019, she created a special commission to be sold at our Wind of Change gala dinner, with her group portrait of our Lions of Lyon selling for thousands.
Emma became a member of Artist's for Conservation in 2018 – a Canadian international non-profit organisation, which represents 500 wildlife artists from 30 countries, all committed to conservation.
“When one of my paintings hangs on someone’s wall; I want them to have the feeling that the animal is there in the room with them and to really connect with the individual and experience just a little of the beauty of nature; and therefore, maybe, want to protect it.” – Emma Bowring