Carol Barrett graduated in drawing and painting at Edinburgh College of Art and has been a professional wildlife artist for over 25 years. She lives and works from The Dovecot Studio in Edinburgh, Scotland.
Carol regularly makes field trips to Africa to study the wildlife in its natural habitat, to gather valuable material for her painting by sketching, keeping daily diaries and colour notes for light which assist in invoking memories of a scene or encounter and using the camera to help capture a moment and provide more details that time often does not permit. These missions have taken her to Botswana, Ethiopia, Kenya, Namibia, Tanzania, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.
Sketching a family group of elephant near the Luangwa River in September 2018
and studying the skeleton and carcass remains of a mature elephant which died of natural causes in South Luangwa’s NP
Carol made a decision to specialise in wildlife art after her first going to Kenya in 1990, where a keen fascination for African wildlife developed and continues to grow to present day.
A few years later she became the Artist in Residence for The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, where solo and mixed wildlife art exhibitions were mounted at RZSS over a number of years.
In 2006 she was invited to The Cheetah Conservation Fund’s HQ in Namibia to use her artistic skill and has continued to be one of their artists helping wild cheetah.
‘ Kit’ ~ Watercolour and Gouache
Australian marsupials, birds and other unique indigenous wildlife were able to be featured in Carol’s last solo exhibition, ‘Brush with the Wild’ in 2017 after she spent time in the protected bush areas in the southern and western parts of the country. Kangaroo Island, in particular Flinders Chase proved to be a sanctuary for most of the native species. Many of the drawings and paintings were done on naturally sourced paper e.g. wombat & kangaroo dung paper.
Carol has exhibited with the International Primatological Society, The Wildlife Art Society International, The National Exhibition of Wildlife Art’ and The Marwell International Wildlife Art Society.
In 2009 she was short-listed by the BBC Wildlife Magazine’s Art Competiton and in 2011 by The David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation’s Wildlife Artist of the Year Portfolio.
In 2012 Carol had two of her watercolours selected and a pastel artwork in 2015 for The Wildlife Artist of the Year (WAY) Exhibition in the Mall Galleries, London.
‘Clouds of Mercy’ was one of the watercolours selected for exhibition at the WAY Exhibition
Carol has held four solo exhibitions of her paintings at The Donald Watson Gallery, Waterstone House in the Scottish Ornithologist’s Club in 2010, 2012, 2014 and 2017.
‘Ruffled Emu’ ~ Watercolour and Ink
Carol has completed over 590 commissioned works in a variety of media: some are in private collections in Africa, Australia, Canada, Europe, India and USA.
A committed conservationist Carol supports a number of wildlife organizations in Africa and the UK.
Gathering material in the dry riverbed of Zambia’s Mushilashi River, close to Nzonzi Camp
Observing Carmine Bee-eaters feeding and flying back to their nesting holes in the Luangwa riverbank
Photographing a hippo pod on a morning game drive