The Flower Hunter

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The Flower Hunter

Post  Fran on Tue Sep 30, 2008 11:08 am

Rowan Ellis - painter and naturalist who went exploring to find, record and paint every wildflower she could find in Australia. She also painted birds and insects.

Some of her wonderful paintings can be seen online here (www.nla.gov.au/catalogue/pictures/ - do a search of her name.

A remarkable woman in more ways than one.

In her book A Flower Hunter in Queensland and New Zealand, she recalls an attempt, when once travelling alone, to cross the Bloomfield River, south of Cooktown. She became trapped on a log by a rapidly rising tide, and noticed a crocodile circling her. She was rescued by Aborigines. On her first visit to New Guinea in 1916, she contracted malaria but returned there undaunted a year later. After some months painting from live specimens as many of the rare and endangered Birds of Paradise as possible, she succumbed to a second bout of malaria and was carried out of the jungle by New Guinea tribesmen. Many of the places she visited were remote, and she was often the only, or one of a very few, white women in the area.
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Fran
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