Francesca Sanders: our hotly tipped up and coming wildlife artist

We’ve been huge fans of talented artist Francesca Sanders for many years. We’re also rather jealous of her lifestyle, travelling through some of Kenya’s most ravishing game reserves, painting as she goes. The end result is some spectacular artwork, painted with a flair that’s already made Francesca a finalist of the BBC Wildlife Artist of the Year competition this year.

Sleeping hippos by African wildlife artist Francesca Sanders

Sleeping Hippos by Francesca Sanders

On Tuesday evening I visited the private view of Francesca’s exhibition at Love Brand in Chelsea. I fell in love with an oil painting of a fat little baby hippo, and was left positively aching for Africa in front of a picture of a grand sweep of Samburu National Park, stretching for miles with a family of tiny ellies striding sedately through the grasslands.

Elephants by Francesca Sanders

Elephants by Francesca Sanders

For any Africa lover in London this is well worth a visit, and if anyone wants to spoil me with a Christmas present, I’ll have the hippos please!

Francesca Sanders is exhibiting at Love Brand, 5 Park Walk, Chelsea, SW10 0AJ from 11th-23rd November 2013 from 10am-6pm.

Where would you go if you were flying to Africa tonight? Or, holidays worth going to work for.

A few years ago I used to work in a large office of safari experts, all passionate Africa lovers. Our favourite game on a quiet Friday afternoon was to plan our fantasy African adventure. We discussed the safaris that we’d sell our souls to get to, the remote beaches that our bones ached for, and the game reserves we lost afternoons dreaming of. We talked about lodges, camps, and game reserves that made coming to work worthwhile, if only because it meant each paycheque brought us closer to another African adventure.

Time and again, the same names came up, the places that were so magical we all adored them.  And here they are, our ultimate African experiences.