South African artist Trish Mitchell presents a collection of oil paintings that express the ethereal and delicate beauty of flowers. Find more of her art by visiting her website.
I have always been deeply and profoundly moved by the beauty I see in the world around me. As a young girl, I loved to arrange and rearrange my room so it felt beautiful to me. I would run my hands over pretty dresses and watch my Nonna as she spritzed herself from an exquisitely detailed bottle of “Fleurs de Rocaille” by Caron.
Born in 1970 in Johannesburg, South Africa, I grew up surrounded by the European influence of my Italian mom’s discerning eye. I was fortunate to be exposed to the world of beautiful art, interior design and decorating, along with the love of creativity and attention to detail through her many amazing handiworks.
We travelled overseas as a family, and I fell in love with Paris. I loved the beautiful works of the Impressionists and the stunning architecture of my Milanese heritage. Colour and its endless nuances were fascinating to me. I spent many hours as a young woman studying colour theory and applying its lessons to my wardrobe, decorating and makeup. Any opportunity to create, decorate and make beautiful was a joy to me!
However, it would be many years before all these interests and influences coalesced into my calling to be an artist.
After obtaining a degree and working in the commercial world, I left the workplace to raise three children. In 2010, as my three children were just reaching school-going age, I finally had some free time. I was introduced to my first art class and teacher—a gifted, inspiring artist who remains a good friend to this day. I had finally discovered the way I wanted, and loved, to communicate the beauty I see in a timeless way.
Initially I tried a loose, impressionistic style. Eventually I realised that I was intuitively much more drawn to the classical style with its more accurate portrayal of form.
After travelling to the United States to attend workshops with Daniel J. Keys and Katie G. Whipple, I was introduced to the master realist Douglas Flynt. He has a superb teaching program.
I have devoted myself to the study of classical drawing and painting methods under Doug’s expert tutelage for the past four years. He has been instrumental as I developed into the artist I am today.
After trying many different subjects, I finally found my artistic home by capturing the numinous quality, portrayed in the light and form, of flowers—most especially in the sublime delicacy of the peony.
Although I have travelled extensively, I am drawn time and time again back to Paris. For me, it is one of the true centres of man’s greatest artistic creations and my greatest inspiration. Most days, however, you will find me at my easel in my studio in Cape Town overlooking Table Mountain, with my devoted Maltese poodles, Tiggy and Pookie, at my feet.