Floral art comes in so many different forms, but until I met Wendy Wilbraham, I’d not come across tiles with flowers depicted in stone before…
Wendy was at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show in May, a perfect place to exhibit her floral designs.
She very kindly answered a few questions for me:
When did you start your business?
I began making tiles surprisingly quite a lot of years ago; one of those tentative ventures where you begin making out of curiosity for yourself.
Gladly others encouraged and very early on I was given the opportunity to create several thousand tiles for a large project.
This gave me experience and confidence, it trickled along fitting around home and study and then about 7 years ago, I realised tile-making happily took up the larger part of my time.
Where do you get your floral inspiration for your designs?
The dear daisy as an emblem is a central theme, the regularity and evenness inspires the rhythmic placement of materials and the stems curving and bending allow me to explore the differences of character for each piece.
Of course I ask much of the audience and their willingness to accept an image made of pebbles, wire, old pots and glass as a flower!
What are your plans for the rest of 2011?
A wonderful commission has led me to new sizes and the introduction of pattern that I now want to explore further.
And finals for an MA in Contemporary Design ensure there is never a spare minute!
Do you have a favourite flower?
Tiny brave bulbs in spring, little patches of white, green, yellow and blue followed by those bold alliums.
In summer, fragile long-stemmed common garden flowers, love-in-a-mist, cornflowers, daisies and poppies, mixed with feathery-leafed herbs.
Flower meadows are a delight, what could be nicer than following a mown path through such beguiling ever-moving textures.
But if it must be just one, then a sweet-scented, soft pink old climbing rose with yellow stamens. Kathleen Harrop perhaps, or Francis Lester tinged with pink and a perfume of apple blossom.
I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing Wendy’s floral designs. They can be found for sale on www.notonthehighstreet.com.
(Images : Wendy Wilbraham)