On March 28, 2007, UK artist Pollyanna Pickering and her daughter/manager Anna-Louise Pickering departed for Bhutan sketch and paint the rare flora and fauna of this largely undisturbed region of the Himalayas.
Find out more...
HonMUniv NDD AFC SOFA
Painter of the Living World
Pollyanna is recognised as one of Europe's foremost wildlife artists. She is the most published fine artist in the UK, and her original paintings hang in corporate and private collections throughout the world from Australia to Siberia.Pollyanna studied at the London Central school of Art, graduating with distinction, and she has worked freelance since 1969. Her original paintings have been exhibited to critical acclaim in top galleries throughout the UK and Europe. She has her own gallery in the Peak District of Derbyshire where she lives and works. In 1983 her work was first accepted for display by the Royal Academy, the same year in which she won her first major trophy, the Silver Palette Award. For many years she was accredited to the Tryon and Swann gallery, and has exhibited at the Mall galleries with The Society of Wildlife Artists, and in Australia with Christies Fine Art. She acts as patron of the Wildlife Art Society International, and is a member of The Society of Animal Artists (New York) and a signature member of the World Nature Artists Group and the Society of Feline ArtistsPollyanna's work will be familiar to most people through her extensive range of published work. Her limited edition and fine art prints, ranges of greeting and Christmas cards and gift ware are exported into over eighty countries world-wide. by her publishers, Otter House. Set up initially to publish Pollyanna's work Otter House are now the market leaders in animal-led gift ware in Europe. Pollyanna designs exclusively for Harrods, the world's most famous depart ment store. Doulton and Wedgwood have released series of limited edition plates , and both Danbury Mint in Europe and Bradford Exchange in the US continue to extend their ranges of collectibles featuring her work. American publishers Browntrout publish five fine art calendars featuring her work annually, which sell internationally. She has painted series of postage stamps for the Republic of Benin and The Congo, and in 2004, First Day Covers for the Royal Mail. Pollyanna is however most pleased when her work can be used to support causes close to her heart, and work has been commissioned and published by every major animal charity including WWF, the RSPB, IFAW, Cats Protection, The Born Free Foundation, and Guide Dogs for the Blind. Many International charities have also commissioned work including the RSPCA (Hong Kong) and Second Sight, the American Guide Dogs association.For fifteen years Pollyanna ran a registered hospital for birds of prey from her home. Caring mainly for injured and orphaned raptors, she also rehabilitated foxes, hedgehogs, squirrels and other mammals, all of which feature in her work. Her third book 'A Brush with Wildlife' tells the story of the sanctuary, and the paintings inspired by the close contact with the creatures in her care, which is reflected in the realism and vitality of her workPollyanna's determination to paint only animals which she has observed in their natural habitats has lead her into a remarkable and unique series of journeys into some of the most inhospitable areas of the globe. Her expeditions to study threatened species have taken her across five continents, from the jungles of India to the deserts of North America, and the wastelands of Siberia where she painted the threatened Amur Tiger. She has painted in the rain forests of Central America, and the forests of Transylvania. The award-winning book 'Giant Pandas and Sleeping Dragons' was inspired by her travels in the Tibetan Borderlands of China in search of the giant panda, while 'On Top of the World' tells of her expeditions into the High Arctic to paint polar wildlife. In 2007 she undertook the 4th AFC flag expedition into the Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan.Pollyanna's skills as an artist, and her journeys into remote, inhospitable and often dangerous areas of the world attract much media attention. She was voted Speaker of the Year in 2004, and has also become a familiar face in the national press, and on television and radio. In 2008 the most recent documentary about her work 'Made in England' was broadcast on BBC1.In 2001 the Pollyanna Pickering Foundation was established, to raise funds for world-wide conservation, animal welfare and disaster relief. Pollyanna continues in her support of other charities. Within her local community she has acted as Honorary president of associations including the RSPCA, and Hearing dogs for the Deaf, and has been awarded the Freedom of Bolsover and District in recognition of her charitable work in the area. She is a member of the Court of the University of Derby, and a patron of National charities including The Badger Trust, Cats in Need, Raptor Rescue, Naturewatch, and FABLE who raise funds for epilepsy sufferers and a trustee of the Irish African/Asian Conservation Trust. She has accepted the post of International Vice President of Bill Jordan's Wildlife Defence Fund, and acts as UK ambassador to the De Wildt Cheetah and Wildlife Trust, and global ambassador for Australian conservation initiative Wildlife Warriors.Pollyanna continues to receive awards and accolades for her paintings, including the Silver Palette Trophy and the Millennium Trophy bestowed by the Wildlife Art Society International who have also awarded her two Gold Medals. In 2004 she was awarded a coveted first prize in the Wildlife Artist of the Year Awards, and in 2007 won the first National Wildscape Masterclass Challenge. In 2006 the Artists for Conservation Foundation honoured her with their prestigeous Conservation Artist Award. In 2009 she was named SAA Professional Wildlife Artist of the Year.However in recent years she has also been recognised for her remarkable accomplishments in both business and conservation. She was a finalist in the 2000 Business Woman of the Year Awards, and has been awarded the Freedom of Bolsover and District in recognition of her charitable work in the area. In 2003 her name appeared in a list of the ten Greatest East Midlanders as voted for by the public, the same year in which she received a commendation for her work in Arts and Media at the European Women of Achievment Awards. In 2004 she was the winner of the Hera award at at the prestigious NatWest everywoman Awards which celebrate the achievements of women in business. In 2006 she was awarded the Department of Trade and Investment's Women in Business Achievement Award and the following year receieved one of the first Excellence in the Community from Derbyshire County Council, in recognition of her ‘outstanding personal achievement' which has helped to put Derbyshire on the map. In 2009 she was one of the three shortlisted finalists for the Women in Public Life Awards, and in 2010 named Entrepeneur of the Year at the Inaugural DT Business Awards.In 2005 The International Fund for Animal Welfare named her Animal Conservation Fund-raiser of the Year, honouring her with an award at a special presentation at the House of Lords. In 2008 she recieved an honorary degree from the University of Derby in recognition of her acheivements.
Support for Conservation:
Pollyanna Pickering is passionate about wildlife and equally passionate about accurately interpreting her subjects. She is a champion of environmental conservation, both on the national and international stage, and is a indefatigable campaigner for the welfare of endangered, sick and vulnerable creatures.
Pollyanna has dedicated her life to the welfare of animals - not only in conserving habitats and species, but also alleviating the suffering of individuals. She is the Founder of the Pollyanna Pickering Foundation which raises funds for the protection and rescue of wildlife, endangered species and the environment as well as emergency disaster relief .
For fifteen years Pollyanna ran her own wildlife sanctuary, 'Brookvale Bird Rescue' - funded entirely by her painting. A a licensed registered keeper, she intended to care for birds of prey which need specialist treatment, feeding and care many other rescue centres are not equipped to provide. However as news of the sanctuary spread, every kind of creature was brought to her doorstep - she cared for, reared and re-released foxes, squirrels, hares, garden birds, even bats, toads and slow worms!
Eventually when her work as an artist began to take her away from home more and more, she had to regretfully take the decision to scale down the animal hospital - though she continues to care for her permanent residents. In 2001 she formally established the Pollyanna Pickering Foundation, initially intending to raise funds to support other wildlife hospitals and sanctuaries. In its first year, the Foundation built tunnels to help rehabilitate orphan badgers in a rescue centre in the Northeast, and provided an incubator and equipment for a hedgehog hospital. Since then she has widened the scope of the fund-raising to include conservation projects abroad - major projects include :
"The Eye of the Tiger" in the Summer of 2001 raised over £5,500.00 for Project Tiger, and the Victims of the Gujurat earthquake in India. In addition a letter writing campaign was initiated urging the Indian Prime Minister to give priority to Tiger Conservation. A petition of over 1,000 signatures was sent to the Indian Government. Over 100 slides of Indian wildlife were sent to the Rajasthan province of India for use in a travelling education programme in schools.
The On Top of the World appeal raised £3,700 to buy equipment for Born Free's project to rear and rehabilitate orphan polar bears in the Arctic, and in conjunction with the Brigitte Bardot Foundation a petition of over 1,000 signatures was sent to the Canadian Government in protest at the continued clubbing of seal cubs.
The Rhino ark appeal raised £4575.00 to help create a safe haven for Rhinos and other wildlife within the Aberdare national Park in Kenya.
The Company of Wolves Appeal raised £5660.00 for wolf conservation, £3650.00 of which purchased Rabies vaccine for the Ethiopian Wolf Conservation Project, in conjunction with the Born Free Foundation.
The Land of the Snow Tiger Appeal is currently raising funds to build a tiger orphanage in the Chitwan National Park in India in conjunction with The Wildlife Defence Fund. A letter campaign is ongoing to try to halt the building of a pipeline through the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve ' Kedrovaya Pad' which is home to a quarter of Russia's threatened species, including Siberian Tigers, and the Amur Leopard.
Many other grants have been made to other projects and organisations including Wolfwatch UK, Care for the Wild, Friends of the Sea Otter, Secret World Rescue Centre, Wood Green Animal Shelter, the Disasters Emergency Committee, Refuge, and the Wildlife Trusts.
Pollyanna continues in her support of other charities as International Vice President of The Wildlife Defence Fund, Trustee of the African/Asian Conservation Trust, Patron of Naturewatch Raptor Rescue and FABLE. Within her own community she is Honorary president of the North Derbyshire and District RSPCA and Derby and District Hearing Dogs for the Deaf. She has acted as appeal patron for the Derbyshire Wildlife Trust, and as Celebrity Ambassador for Hospital Radio Link.
Pollyanna is most pleased when her work can be used to support the work of charities which help animal welfare, and other concerns close to her heart. Specially commissioned Christmas cards, prints and gift ware have raised millions of pounds for good causes. These include Oxfam (1974), the Peak national Park (1975 and 1981), and the RSPB (since 1983). In 1985 Pollyanna began her close ongoing association with The Guide Dogs for the Blind, who chose one of her paintings for their first ever limited edition print published in 1994. By 1998 their catalogue featured over 60 of her designs.
Work has been published by many other charities including the International Sheep Dog Association (Since 1985), the World Wide Fund for Nature (since 1992), The National Trust (1991) the Cats Protection League (1992) , Nedscan, The Natural Medicine Society, Wood Green Animal Shelters, the Cleft Lip and Palette Association, (since 1993) , the National Canine Defense League, the Hedgehog Preservation Society, Blue Cross (since 1994), Care for the Wild , the International Fund for Animal Welfare (since 1995) The World Society for The Protection of Animals, (since 1996), Brooke Hospital for Animals, The Royal National Institute for the Blind, Rescued Animals in Need, The Kennel Club, The Sturge-Weber Foundation, Dog Aid Society of Scotland, and The Zoological Society of London as well as countless other smaller charities and organisations.
Pollyanna's artwork has benefited many international charities who have also commissioned work for publication, including the RSPCA in Hong Kong (since 1990), Second Sight (the American Guide Dogs association) (1996) the Singapore SPCA (since 1996) the Philippine Animal Welfare association (since 2000) and Compassion and Responsibility for Animals (Philippines) since 2005.
Pollyanna believes that the unique quality of her work comes from the time spent studying real animals in their natural habitat. Zoos and reference books, are no substitute for experiencing the heat and dust of the Masai Mara, or the biting, vicious cold of the High Arctic. It is this dedication which brings an unmistakable realism and vitality to her work.
Together with her daughter and business partner, Anna-Louise, who is an accomplished photographer, Pollyanna has embarked on a a remarkable ongoing series of expeditions to study and sketch wildlife in their natural habitats. These trips have inspired a number of critically acclaimed exhibitions, as well as a series of highly successful talks.
Pollyanna has travelled to some of the remotest corners of world, facing gruelling journeys into some of the planet's most inhospitable habitats. Pollyanna and Anna-Louiose were the first western women ever to reach a remote area of the Tibetan borderlands, where they worked in a hospital for sick pandas, helping to rear an orphaned baby panda.
Pollyanna has braved temperatures of -60, travelling by dog sled and sleeping in igloos to paint polar bears, and braved the heat of rain forests of central America, the jungles of India and plains of Africa in search of big cats. She has travelled widely in the deserts and mountains of North Amreica sketchoing the native wildlife. Recent expeditions have taken her to the Carpathian Mountains of Transylvania, home to the world's largest remaining population of European wolves, and in January 2005 into the Siberian wastelands of Russia's Far East where she joined a team of russian scientitsts radio-tracking Amur Tigers.
Pollyanna gives up over 100 evenings every year to talk to societies throughout the UK about conservation world-wide . These talks both help raise awareness of the plight faced by many of the world's threatened species, and raise additional funds for her Foundation.
- 2010 - Honorary Fellowship
Pollyanna has been named an honorary fellow of The Wildlife Art Society International. This honour was bestowed in recognition of Pollyanna’s contribution to the world of Wildlife Art, and her ongoing support of the work of the Society, which aims to promote the wildlife art genre in its own right, whilst providing a focus for the interests of all wildlife artists, painters, sculptors and photographers.
Pollyanna also acts as patron of the society, which will celebrate it’s twentieth anniversary next year.
- 2009 - Entrepreneur of the Year
Pollyanna was named ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’ in the inaugural The Derbyshire Times Business Awards in a glittering ceremony at Hassop Hall. The award was created to recognise an outstanding individual who best demonstrates exceptional vision and leadership in the establishment and development of an owner-led business.
- 2009 - Finalist - Women in Public Life Awards
Finalist - Women in Public Life Awards
Pollyanna was one of just three women shortlisted for their achievements in the Business Woman of the Year award category at the Women in Public Life Awards which rewarded the most influential women that parliamentarians identifed as having made an outstanding contribution to public life during the past year
- 2009 - Professional Wildlife Artist of the Year
2009 ended on a high note for Pollyanna when she was named ‘Professional Wildlife Artist of the Year’ in the Society for All Artists Artist of the Year Awards. Pollyanna’s painting ‘Fragile World’ which secured the title for her, was completed following her AFC fellowship expedition fellowship expedition into the Himalayan Kingdom of Bhutan
- 2008 - Bronze Medal
The Wildlife Art Society International presented Pollyanna's 'Sands of Time' with one of the top awards to be bestowed at their annual exhibition. During 2008 Pollyanna was also one of the finalists shortlisted for the DSWF Widlife Artist of the Year award.
- 2008 - Honorary Degree
The University of Derby conferred the honorary degree of master of the University on Pollyanna during their 2008 graduation ceremonies in recognition of her achievements in art and conservation. Pollyanna is now entitled to use the letters HonMUniv after her name.
- 2007 - Wildscape Masterclass Challenge
Pollyanna is very pleased to have won the first 'Masterclass Challenge' organised by Wildscape, the UK's only national magazine dedicated to wildlife art.
- 2007 - Excellence in the Community Award
Pollyanna was one of the first recipients of a new excellence award from Derbyshire County Council, for her ‘outstanding personal achievement’ which has helped to put Derbyshire on the map.
- 2006 - Expedition Fellowship from Artist's for Conservation Foundation
Pollyanna was granted a fellowship from Artists for Conservation in support of her expedition into the Himalayan Kingdom of Bhutan.
- 2006 - Department of Trade and Industry's Women in Business Achievement Award.
Pollyanna's daughter and business partner Anna-Louise has been honoured with this award for her work as a director of Pollyanna Pickering Ltd. The award is a joint initiative between the UK government, Women in Business International and the British Exporter's Association. It recognises the achievements of high flying business women, and aims to inspire other women to the top of the workplace ladder.
- 2006 - Conservation Artist Award
Pollyanna was honoured with this prestigious award by the Artists for Conservation Foundation in recognition of her extraordinary contribution to conservation and wildlife art.
- 2005 - IFAW Animal Conservation Fund-raiser of the Year
The International Fund for Animal Welfare named Pollyanna as their 'Animal Conservation Fund-raiser of the Year 2005' in recognition of her tireless work through the Pollyanna Pickering Foundation to both conserve endangered species and help injured wildlife within the UK. Just nine awards are given annually by the society, to honour the world's most caring animal lovers. The crystal trophy was presented at the House of Lords.
- 2004 - Gold Medal - The Wildlife Art Society International
The Wildlife Art Society International presented Pollyanna's 'Study of A Wolf' with one of the top awards to be bestowed at their annual exhibition, for the second year running. The painting was inspired by her travels in Transylvania.
- 2004 - Hera Award - Natwest Everywoman Awards
Pollyanna was honoured to win one of the UK's top national Business awards, which reward not only business women who have achieved significant success, but also those who have overcome adversities such as financial constraints, social disadvantages or skills gaps and strived forward with sheer determination and passion.
- 2004 - First Place - Wildlife Artist of the Year Awards
Pollyanna's painting of a blackbird 'Golden October' took the first place in the Birds category of these prestigeous awards.
- 2004 - Speaker of the Year
Pollyanna was voted Speaker of the Year 2004 at the Speaker Finder's Conference in Harrogate. At this event, the speaker-finders for societies across England nominate their favourite speakers from their past season's programme. Pollyanna was chosen as the year's most popular speaker against very stiff competition, including politicians, comedians, actors and TV presenters for her talks about her journeys to study and paint endangered species.
- 2003 - Gold Medal - The Wildlife Art Society International
The Wildlife Art Society International presented Pollyanna's landscape 'Tranquility' with one of the top awards to be bestowed at their annual exhibition.
- 2003 - Finalist - Greatest East Midlander Awards
Pollyanna was very pleased - as well as somewhat surprised! - to find herself voted onto the final short list of the ten greatest East Midlanders of all time. Following on from the nation-wide vote to find the greatest Briton, the East Midlands Regional Assembly invited the public to nominate candidates from their own region.
- 2003 - Commendation - European Women of Achievment Awards
The Women of Achievement awards aim to reward outstanding accomplishment with special accolades, and the final short list is drawn from thousands of nominations from throughout the European Union. As one of just five women to recieve commendations in the arts and media category, Pollyanna was recognised for her remarkable achievements in her chosen artistic field and in particular her dedication to conservation and the protection of endangered species world-wide.
- 2002 - Public's Favourite Award - The Wildlife Art Society Exhibition
At the annual exhibition of The Wildlife Art Society, the general public are invited to vote for their favourite piece of work. Pollyanna was delighted when the three paintings she had on exhibition gathered between them the most overall votes for all the work on show by a single artist.
- 2001 - Finalist - Midlands Business Woman of the Year Award
Pollyanna was honoured to be selected from thousands of entries as one of just six finalists for the Midlands Business Women of the Year award. The extremely prestigious award is presented annually at the Women of The Year Luncheon.
- 2000 - Millennium Trophy - the Wildlife Art Society International
Pollyanna was selected by the Wildlife Art Society International to receive their special Millennium Trophy for Wildlife Art. This is a one off crystal trophy to celebrate artistic excellence at the turn of the century.
- 1999 - Awarded Freedom of Bolsover and District
Pollyanna was given the Key to Bolsover in a civic ceremony in recognition of her charity work in the area, including assisting in the establishment of a nature reserve in a woodland area threatened by destruction, and work with schools and community groups.
- 1989 - HRH Princess Anne
Portrait of Horse presented to the Princess Royal
- British Gas plc
Series of twelve paintings commissioned for corporate collection.
- David Bowie
Landscape purchased through gallery for private collection.
- Magnus Magnusson - Honorary President RSPB
Painting of gyr falcon commissioned for presentation to president of Royal Society for the Protection of Birds in honour of their centenary.
- His Excellency Sheik Mohammed
Series of paintings commissioned of winning racehorses, for private collection.
- John Hurt (Actor)
Sketch of tawny owls bought through gallery for private collection. Featured in 'At Home' photo spread in Hello! magazine
- Dowager Duchess of Devonshire
Portrait of horses commissioned for private collection.
- Hoover plc
A series of original paintings commissioned for corporate collection.
- The Eye of The Tiger (2008)
More about The Eye of The Tiger
Includes sketches and illustrations throughout, and finishes with portfolio of thirty paintings. -
Tells the story of Pollyanna's expeditions into China to paint tigers and other endagered species. Preface : Nick Jenkins IFAW Foreword : Virginia McKenna
Author: Anna-Louise Pickering
Published by: Otter House
Author: Anna-Louise Pickering
Published by: Otter House
- A Brush With Willdife (2004)
More about A Brush With Willdife
Includes sketches and illustrations througout, and finishes with portfolio of thirty paintings. - Tells the story of the wildlife hospital and bird sanctuary run by Pollyanna for fifteen years, and the paintings which were inspired by this close contact with birds and animals. Preface : Twiggy Foreword : David Bellamy.
Author: Anna-Louise Pickering
Published by: Otter House
- Exploring the Secret World of Wildlife Rescue (2003)
- Pollyanna is one of several celebrity contributors to the book 'Secret World' which tells the story of the remarkable wildlife rescue centre run by Pauline Kidner in Somerset.
Author: Pauline Kidner
Published by: Halsgrove
- On Top of the World (2002)
More about On Top of the World
Includes sketches and illustrations througout, and finishes with portfolio of twenty paintings. - The story of Pollyanna''s expeditions into the High Arctic to study and paint polar bears in their natural habitat. Preface : Billy Connolly, Foreword : Brigitte Bardot
Author: Anna-Louise Pickering
Published by: Otter House
- Giant Pandas and Sleeping Dragons (1999)
More about Giant Pandas and Sleeping Dragons
Includes sketches and illustrations througout, and finishes with portfolio of twenty paintings. - The story of Pollyanna''s remarkable joureny into the Tibetan Borderlands to study and paint Giant Pandas.Preface : Stuart Chapman WWF Foreword : Virginia McKenna.
Author: Anna-Louise Pickering
Published by: Otter House
- The Healthy Dog Book (1999)
Cover Painting and illustrations throughout. - The Natural guide to canine care and cuisine.
Author: Alexandra Bastedo
Published by: Robson Books
- The Healthy Cat Book (1998)
Cover Painting and illustrations throughout. - The Natural guide to feline care and cuisine.
Author: Alexandra Bastedo
Published by: Robson Books
- 2005 - Signature Member - Artists for Conservation Foundation
- 2004 - Society of Animal Artists
Pollyanna is a juried member of this Society, which is based in New York and represents some of the world's finest animal artists.
- Patron - The Wildlife Art Society International
Pollyanna is patron of this prestigious Art Society founded with the purpose of promoting a greater appreciation of the wildlife art genre. She has enjoyed a long association with the group, exhibiting regularly at their annual exhibitions. Other patrons include fellow wildlife artist David Shepherd and the Marquess of Bath.
- Signature member - The Society of Feline Artists
- Honorary Life President - Chesterfield Art Society
Pollyanna is pleased to hold this honorary post with an art group in her home county. She has inaugurated the President's trophy, which is awarded annually.
- International Vice President - The Wildlife Defense Fund
Pollyanna has accepted the honorary post of Vice President of a wildlife charity committed to the welfare of animals world-wide - The Wildlife Defence Fund founded by Dr Bill Jordan, one of the world's most respected Wildlife Vets.
- The Court of the University of Derby
Pollyanna is honoured to be an invited member of the University Court.
- Honorary President - R.S.P.C.A.
Pollyanna holds the post of Honorary President of the North Derbyshire and Dirstict branch of the Royal Society for the Protection of Animals.
- Trustee - African/Asian Conservation Trust
Pollyanna is trustee of this conservation organisation based in Ireland.
- Patron - Naturewatch
Pollyanna is pleased to act as patron of this National Charity.
- Patron - Raptor Rescue
Pollyanna is pleased to act s patron of this National charity
- Patron - F.A.B.L.E.
Pollyanna is a patron of FABLE, a national charity which raises funds to help sufferers of Epilepsy and their carers, and also run a national advice line for people affected by this illness.
- The Derbyshire Wildlife Trust
Pollyanna is a longstanding member of her local wilidfe trust, and has acted as an appeal patron.
- Honorary President - Hearing Dogs for the Deaf
Pollyanna is the Honorary President of the Derby and District Branch of this charity.
- Patron - The Badger Trust
Pollyanna has become the first patron of this national charity which promotes the conservation, welfare and protection of badgers, their setts and habitats. The Badger Trust is the leading voice for badgers in Britain, and represents and supports the activity of 80 local voluntary badger groups.
- Patron - Gamelea Countryside Training Trust
Pollyanna is patron to this remarkable charity which provides employment and training for adults with learning disabilities.