Botanical drawings and paintings by Cairns artist, Julie McEnerny, are available as prints on paper or on top quality linen tea towels.
Julie finds inspiration for her work in the plethora of lush tropical
plants that surround her home and in the nearby Botanic Gardens.
Her botanical drawings usually start life as black and white sketches in charcoal or soft pencil. The drawings are then refined and developed further, often using watercolour, to become works of art in their own right.
For five years, Julie was Artist-in Residence at the Cairns Botanical Gardens, a position which she loved and which resulted in a large body of botanical work, some of which toured interstate (eg the 'Offshoots' retrospective exhibition).
Commenting on the thought and skill which goes into each tea towel, Julie says, "Each artwork takes many hours and that's after sourcing the subject matter, which sometimes means climbing a tree, wading into a lake or 'sweet talking' a tree lopper! I'm very proud of the work that goes into each painting and I remember the specific plants in great detail".
The banana plant design, above left, started life as drawings of banana trees that Julie had growing in her back yard. She enjoyed the shade that they provided as she sketched viewpoints of the flower and developing fruit, in various stages of development.
She quite often visits cacao trees at Cairns Botanical Gardens so made a succession of sketches of the tree and its fruit - aren't they interesting? Inside the leathery skin are dozens of seeds surrounded by whitish flesh. Once they are dried, the seeds are processed into chocolate - the darker the better for your health!
First and foremost, Julie's tea towel designs are botanical studies, which develop into artwork in their own right. She then chooses certain designs to be printed with special inks (which do not fade or wash out for many years of usage) on high quality linen and hemmed in Australia.
We have chosen tea towels for you, whose subjects which relate to this website - super foods of the Australian tropics. The benefits of bananas are discussed on this page, while those of raw cacao may be found here.