Leigh Ann was born in England and grew up in Warwickshire where she obtained a national diploma in technical illustration. She moved to London to study graphics and graduated in 1989 from Ravensbourne College of Art and Design with an honours degree in Graphic Design. For eight years she pursued a career in graphic design and packaging.
After marrying her husband in 1993 and the birth of her daughter, she moved to Sussex and took up evening classes in flower painting. Inspired by these classes and realising she had the potential to become a professional botanical artist, she went on to complete the diploma in botanical illustration at the English Gardening School, Chelsea Physic Garden. Upon graduating in 2004, she became a member of the Society of Floral Painters and was also immediately invited to join the Hampton Court Palace Florilegium Society where, now as a Fellow, she has many paintings held in the Historic Palaces archives.
A chance meeting with her evening class tutor led her to undertake a teacher training qualification and in 2008 she gained her Certificate in Education. Leigh Ann now teaches botanical illustration throughout West Sussex and Surrey and mentors students on botanical illustration diploma and certificate courses.
Over the years Leigh Ann has joined several florilegia including the Sydney Florilegium in Australia and the Nymans Florilegium in Sussex. She has been instrumental in the establishment of the recently formed Leonardslee Lakes and Gardens Florilegium also in Sussex, and hopes to be teaching courses and workshops at this venue soon. Leigh Ann is also a member of the Horsham School of Botanical Artists, a small group of botanical artists located in the Horsham district who meet regularly to help and support each other and exhibit their work together locally. Leigh Ann has exhibited her work internationally over the years and has been awarded medals by the RHS and the Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden in Cape Town, South Africa. Her work is held in the permanent collection at the Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation in Pittsburgh, USA as well as private collections around the world.
Leigh Ann has published two books; ‘Botanical Illustration – the complete guide’ in June 2018 and ‘Colour for Botanical Artists and Illustrators’ in September 2021. She has recently been commissioned to write her third book ‘Drawing & Painting Leaves’ which currently has an estimated publication date in 2024.
Leigh Ann also undertakes privately commissioned work.