The wonderfully talented Amber Tenzin-Dolma

Working from her Hobbit House studio in Bath Spa, Somerset, Amber Tenzin-Dolma creates vibrant and imaginative artwork inspired by nature and science. This talented young artist blends watercolours and oils, tempera and gold leaf, mixed media and graphic design to form ethereal illustrations and intricate geometric fractals.

I have been friends with Amber’s mother, Lisa Tenzin-Dolma, since my days as commissioning editor on the partwork magazine, Enhancing Your Mind Body Spirit. Lisa is a writer, artist, musician, canine psychologist – and Amber has inherited her mother’s creative energy, artistic skills and passion for the natural world.

On a visit to Bath this year, I was warmly welcomed into the charming Hobbit House set among the pretty countryside of Somerset. Amber’s beautiful paintings reflect her surroundings from Bath’s classical Roman and Georgian heritage to the wide fields and wild woodlands.

A sphinx of classical mythology sits beneath blue skies and sunlit clouds.

A woodpecker painted on the door leads the way into Amber’s art studio.

Early on Sunday morning I sat in Lisa’s sweet-smelling herb garden as a hot air balloon passed overhead and watched a fat bumblebee exploring the lavender and thyme. I remember thinking that the bumble’s bright colours, fuzzy fur and symmetrically patterned wings would make a good study for Amber’s art…

A bumblebee of Bath plants the seed of an idea…

Some time passed since I returned to London after a fun weekend spent catching up with my friend and walking the dogs in the woods, but the thought was never lost. I eventually contacted Amber to ask if she was interested in a brief for my blog: a watercolour inspired by the magical alchemy between flowers, bees and honey, and taking flowers used to obtain essential oils such as myrtle, rose, lavender, thyme, rosemary and violets.

Amber was thrilled at the idea and almost immediately sent back some initial sketches, which were exactly what I had in mind.

A sketch of the banner artwork. Amber used rosemary, violets and a rose overlaid on a photo of our mischievous bees when Emily and me had caught them making brace honeycomb last year.

For the background art, Amber used myrtle, rose, lavender, thyme and violets with three hungry bees and, of course, honeycomb. The flowers were chosen from my favourite essential oils with creative license to make myrtle my favourite colour – pink!

When I returned from my holiday in Italy, a lovely surprise was waiting in my inbox – the final paintings for my blog with added sparkle. Bees have never looked so pretty.

After experimenting with crops and tiling, Amber’s beautiful artwork went live on my blog yesterday and I couldn’t be happier. As an aromatherapist and beekeeper, the art represents, for me, the special relationship that flowers have with bees – and the close connection between essential oils and bees!

Amber also designs and makes jewellery using semi-precious stones and silver. She really is a talented lady. A few years ago, I commissioned this turquoise, lapis lazuli and amber necklace as a christening present for my niece, Lauren, which many years from now she will receive to wear on her 21st birthday.

An Egyptian-style necklace created by Amber for my niece, Lauren, using the semi-precious stones of her birth sign – turquoise, lapis lazuli and amber!

Looking at the cute honeycomb background for my blog, I wonder how lovely our hives would look with an Amber Tenzin-Dolma design. Maybe next year…

Related links
Amber’s sketchbook and paintings are available on her website, and her jewellery is sold on Etsy at Aether Design.

I shouldn’t forget to mention that Lisa and Amber share their home with a deerhound-greyhound lurcher called Skye, and a 15-year-old Oldies Club collie-husky foster dog, Shep ‘The Shepster’. Lisa’s new book, The heartbeat at your feet, will be published later this year.

Skye and his paws.

Shep ‘The Shepster’

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16 thoughts on “The wonderfully talented Amber Tenzin-Dolma

    • Thank you 🙂 Amber has captured the characters of our bees perfectly, they really can be mischievous. Last year, those two in the banner knew exactly that Emily and me had caught them out making honeycomb where they shouldn’t 🙂

  1. “Looking at the cute honeycomb background for my blog, I wonder how lovely our hives would look with an Amber Tenzin-Dolma design. Maybe next year…”

    YES PLEASE. If Amber was interested, that is. And we could pretend the design had the practical purpose of helping prevent drifting…

    After seeing Lauren’s beautiful necklace I’ve added Amber’s shop to my Etsy favourites. What a lovely idea to have a necklace waiting for her 21st!

    • Our hives would look so pretty with that honeycomb pattern with flowers – to prevent drifting, of course! If only to find some bee-friendly paint 🙂 Amber’s shop is on my favourites too, I love her jewellery. When I stayed at Lisa’s, Amber would disappear for a morning, then come out before lunch and show us all the jewellery she had been crafting 🙂

    • The necklace came with a pair of earrings and are in a safety box for Lauren when she turns 21. I thought it would be nice for her to have a christening gift she can use when she is older rather than the traditional silver spoons and egg cups babies usually get! 🙂 Glad you like Amber’s art!

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