Sue Dickinson (1958-2019) was one of South Africa's foremost wildlife watercolour artists, her unique artworks finding their way into private collections worldwide, including those of South Africa's first democratically elected president, Nelson Mandela, and Britain's Queen Elizabeth II.
Born in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, in 1958, Dickinson studied Fine Art at the University of the Witwatersrand before launching her graphic design studio. In 1994 she started painting full-time and was soon considered one of the best South African wildlife artists of her generation.
Her optimism about and celebration of all things African led to her being asked to create artwork for several South African postage stamps, including airmail tags commemorating the discovery of Thulamela, the world-famous archaeological site in the Kruger National Park. Dickinson's style was unique as a wildlife artist: her perspective was fixed on the animal itself, using a white background to focus the viewer's eye on the subject.
Her preferred painting medium was watercolour on paper, widely acknowledged by abrtists as the most difficult. "There is no room for error," she said. "Once it is on the paper, it is almost impossible to remove, so I work carefully and accurately. I'm not attempting to reproduce reality, so I want to work fairly loosely."
Dickinson exhibited her artwork extensively in South African art galleries and Italy, France, the UK and the USA. She received the coveted Award of Excellence from the Society of Animal Artists in 2007 and was a judge for the International Watercolour Society.