Alison Cutts; scientific & botanical artist


I am an artist and scientific illustrator in Northumberland (UK) and a tutor at the Natural History Society of Northumbria, where I teach a variety of natural history illustration courses. I am a Fellow member of the Society of Botanical Artists (SBA).

I've been interested in both nature and art since I was very young, although I didn't make the connection between the two until morphology classes as a Zoology undergraduate. It was only then that I realised that drawing was both the best way to understand how animals are put together, and how to explain this to others.

I enjoy working with botanical and zoological subjects of all sizes, in particular understanding complex forms, repeating patterns and spirals. I produce formal, technical scientific illustrations suitable for academic papers, textbooks and field guides as well as bold, contemporary paintings of plants and animals. The white space around my subjects is very important to me. I work in a range of media including watercolour, ink and coloured pencil.

Bsc Hons Zoology (with second year minor in Fine Art), Leeds University

PhD Biomechanics, Leeds University

Diploma in Botanical Illustration (Distinction), Royal Botanical Garden Edinburgh

paintings and drawings

Brassica oleracea

A closer look at the humble cabbage... click the image to view the gallery


Prickly fascination... click the image to view the gallery


A many-legged group of arthropods... click the image to view the gallery


Academic, precise, pen and ink illustrations record the technical details... click the image to view the gallery


Loose, bold and sometimes colourful ink drawings capture the essence of a subject... click the image to view the gallery


When you have nothing but an iPad... click the image to view the gallery

exhibitions & awards

Current Exhibitions

2 - 29 September 2019 - "Subterraneous" an exhibition on the theme of invertebrates organised by the North Pennines AONB Bowlees Visitor Centre, Teesdale

13 - 22 September 2019 - RBGE Diploma Exhibition (final portfolio) Royal Botanic Garden, Edinburgh

Recent Exhibitions

September 2018 : RBGE Diploma Exhibition (first year work)


RBGE Eve Reid Bennett award for botanical illustration (2018)

talks, classes & workshops

15 October 2019 - Stocksfield Plants & Gardens Society ‘Botanical art and looking closely at cabbage’ Stocksfield Community Centre, Stocksfield NE43 7HL 7.30pm Visitors are welcome, there is a small charge (£2); further information here.

I teach Natural History Illustration at the Natural History Society of Northumbria. Recent classes and talks include:

An introduction to scientific illustration

Drawing a gastropod shell

Drawing a winter twig

Illustrating spring leaves

The nature sketchbook

The art of bones

The art of fossils

Printing with leaves (outdoor family activity day)

(Sessions for Autumn 2019 will be updated when NHSN publishes the autumn programme).

I also teach botanical illustration to informal groups - if you would like to arrange a workshop for your group (or individual tuition) please email me at

commissions, sales & licensing

Prints and cards are available in my Etsy shop and at exhibitions. Original work is sometimes for sale at exhibitions.

All the images on this website are available to license - please email me at for details.

If you would like to commission a specific piece of work, please email me at to discuss.


contact me at: