Painter Sonal Nathwani creates immersive gardens inside her sketchbooks. Each double-page spread contains a fresh arrangement of flowers, leaves, and stems, which transform the papers into bucolic portals. These romantic illustrations have an incredible energy about them, and they appear to bloom naturally from the artist’s brush.
Although she currently resides in Vienna, Austria, Nathwani was born to Indian parents in Africa and grew up in England. She says her exposure to a range of aesthetics is the foundation of her own expressive style that feels effortlessly delicate. “I am infinitely inspired by nature,” Nathwani explains on her website. “My work embraces color, a free spirit, and the beauty of imperfection.”
To transform her sketchbooks into handheld floral paintings, Nathwani assembles a palette that is complementary to the flat colors of her paper, which ranges from neutral tones to vibrant shades of varying hues. Then, the artist crafts her flowers of choice using a variation of brushstrokes and textures, occasionally smearing the paint to create an atmospheric effect. As a result of her skill, each intentional imperfection looks as though it was meant to lie on the page.