Taking Time with Tiel of Tsk Tsk – Native plants

by Jenny Butler
Tuesday 13th December 2011

As part of this weeks Guest Blog, Tiel has offered a set of 3 prints to one lucky reader – ‘Season Delights” I, II and III are 5″ x 7″ each and are based on Tiel’s original paintings. To go into the draw to win, simply leave a comment on any of this week’s posts before 10.00pm Thursday!  A winner will be selected randomly and announced this Friday. – Jenny x

What are native plants anyway? I guess everything is native to somewhere. Australia has so many introduced species from all around the world. But I am drawn to native flowers and plants from the southern hemisphere, in particular African and Australian ones. There is something about their structure. They possess such drama through shape and colour. Spring is certainly an amazing season for all the elements of design within nature. Pattern, shape, line etc and Brisbane offers a smorgasbord of flora. Here are few of my current favs and some images I have been working on.

Protea is named after the Greek god Proteus, who could change his form at will. Don’t you love that?

Leucospersium is commonly called the pincushion and is apart of the Proteaceae family. Kangaroo Paw. My current favourite… I must plant some in my garden.

Agapanthus sometimes called the African Lily. As a child my grandfather would take us to the Royal Melbourne Botanical Gardens and tell us not to stand too close to them because they might eat us. I never took the risk.

Banksia. I think the most striking of the Proteaceae family. I love every element of change this flower has to offer.

Tiel x

by Jenny Butler
Tuesday 13th December 2011


  • leah of sang the bird 5 years ago

    my mum has a garden bed of kangaroo paws in varying colours. they are amazing. and i love proteas. a gorgeous balance of masculine and feminine xxx

  • jacqui 5 years ago

    Hi Tiel, I checked out your website yesterday and really, I love your work. I am hugely enjoying this guest blog and the sources of inspiration you identify. That Leucospersium really is delicious.

  • Andrea 5 years ago

    I too am obsessed with native plants and flowers; I think the best thing about proteas, etc. is that they dry so well, leaving you with permanent bouquets for the house.

    I also plan to arrange my own native bouquets for my wedding next year.

  • Elisha 5 years ago

    These prints are truly lovely. I’ve always loved the word Agapanthus. Also when I was little banksias scared me … I cannot remember exactly why but I think there is a classic Australian bush story about banksias with mouths??

  • Natalie 5 years ago

    Love these sculptural natives too. Always have some around the house. Glad to have discovered your work too, looks beautiful.

  • Liza Zeni 5 years ago

    I loved reading your descriptions of each of these natives. I love their structure, strength and yet their most beautiful soft tones and colour compositions. Your work is stunning the way you are able to capture the essence of our Australian natives in form and colour xxx

  • Nat Power 5 years ago

    Natives are the go. More art with more natives will hopefully help spread the word for gardens and art all over.

  • Anna 5 years ago

    Oooh these are beautiful! They remind me of my mum. The colours and structures are amazing, captured so creatively but also so true to the spirit of the plants. Just gorgeous.

  • Michelle F 5 years ago

    I love the layering in Tiels artwork and the fact that she interprets the natives onto paper and canvas in such beautiful details. I have always loved the banksia – my son actually had a Banksia
    Man instead of a Teddy when he was little ! (from the Adventures of Snugglepot & Cuddlepie by May Gibbs)

  • Lauren 5 years ago

    I love Proteas (could be because I am ex South African). I bought some from in front of a house the other day where there was an honesty box! Your artwork is beautiful!

  • Nadine 5 years ago

    Just superb!

  • Emma 5 years ago

    Hello Tiel,
    I love your work, did you know that the Banksia was named after Sir Joseph Banks, a botanist in Captian Cook’s crew? I found that out on a tour of the Botanic Gardens in Adelaide today. I wonder if you’ve visited the Museum of Economic Botany also in the gardens? It’s the only museum of its kind left in the Southern Hemisphere and houses all sorts of plant samples, some dating from the 1880s, amazing!!! Check out the papier-mache apples and mushrooms from turn of last century Germany in particular, priceless!

  • Rebecca 5 years ago

    Very inspiring work indeed. To successfully make such beautiful drawings, paintings and prints of extraordinarily intricate and fascinating plants is a wonderful talent. Congratulations and thank you for sharing. I hope more people get to see your work through having them feature in The Design Files.

  • Zen 5 years ago

    Thanks for the introduction to Tiel’s work.

  • Belinda 5 years ago

    We are so lucky to live in a country that has native plants that are so unique they inspire Tiel to produce amazing works like these!

  • Neza 5 years ago

    I love plants too, their shapes and colours and smell… Tiel’s work is beautiful!

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