Martin J. Allen

I began painting plants in the autumn of 1992 whilst recovering from illness, studying with Colin Swinton. What was intended initially as therapy, quickly turned into a serious interest.

In early 1995 my first Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) exhibit was awarded a Gold medal (the second in 1997 also gained Gold) and in the same year RHS Enterprises Limited commissioned three autumn flower designs as part of their Collectors' Plate Series. Awards at The Society of Botanical Artists' exhibitions followed in 1996 and 1998.
I became a member of the then newly formed Chelsea Physic Garden Florilegium Society in 1995, taking part in their 1999 RHS Gold medal group exhibit, becoming a Fellow in 2000 and regularly writing articles on botanical art for their newsletter. I am now honoured to be an Emeritus Fellow.
I am a gallery artist at Forum Botanische Kunst in Germany.

In between paintings I work on local plant conservation, surveying wildflower habitats for local authorities and helping local communities improve their wildlife areas. It's a very rewarding job that I enjoy hugely. I've surveyed some of the best wildflower-rich grassland in our area, along with condition surveys of our local ancient woodland.
Previously I worked at an environmental visitor centre designing and maintaining demonstration gardens, creating willow sculptures and wildflower habitats, giving advice on a weekly gardening phone-in on local radio for two years, and developing a tropical hydroponicum as part of a Lottery funded Millennium Project.
I  hold a degree with Honours in Environmental Horticulture.