Gillian Bowen-Johnston aka A Singing Cricket is an illustrator from the Otways, a rainforested, southern region in Victoria. She is fascinated with the natural world and collects plants, insects, fossils and antique natural history books. She started her career in Japanese ink painting (sumi-e), and developed through to chinoiserie, and nature and botanical illustrations. Her business “A Singing Cricket” is named from a small cricket in her sumi-e work.
She enjoys exploring nature with her children, showing and teaching them the intricate beauty of the living world and the infinite complexity of our environment.
WHAT IS YOUR SOURCE OF INSPIRATION?
Seeing nature close up, such as the minute hairs on a flower stem or the puff of pollen when a bee lands on a blossom.
WHAT'S THE MOST INCREDIBLE GIFT YOU HAVE EVER RECEIVED?
My husband commissioned a woodcrafter to help design and make a plein air gouache palette. Made from Sequoia wood from Aire River in the Otways National Park – I was overwhelmed when he gave it to me.
DO YOU WORK AT NIGHT OR DURING THE DAY?
At all times around a young family’s schedule.
WHO IS THE ARTIST YOU CRAVE FOR?
YOUR FAVORITE MUSEUM, YOUR FAVORITE DRINK?
Natural History Museum in London / Chai Latte.
IF I SAY « PAPER » WHAT IS THE FIRST THAT COMES TO YOUR MIND?
MENTION A QUOTE YOU FEEL IS CREATIVELY INSPIRING
“The whole world is an art gallery when you’re mindful. There are beautiful things everywhere and they’re free.” Charles Tart
IF YOU WEREN’T AN ARTIST, WHAT WOULD YOU BE?
Paleontologist or Archaeologist.
TOPICS AND CAUSES THAT MATTER TO YOU?
Global warming, conservation and social and political equality.
‘The Source, Otways’.
‘From Around Here’ Aireys Inlet and Torquay.
Featured in BEJournal volume 49 – https://earthendeavours.org