Hanami – Blossom Celebration Day – 23 April 2023



Hanami – Blossom Celebration Day – 23 April 2023

Forest Bathing and Blossom Painting with Forest Bathing Guide Helen Saunders and Artist, Victoria Brown.

10.00 am to 4.00 pm

£75 including refreshments and Japanese snacks.

Have you ever felt disconnected from nature? Do you only capture its beauty fleetingly, rushing through your daily life?

Then join Helen and Victoria  to slow down, reconnect to nature, enjoy the wonder of Nature, trees and spring blossom in a creative way.

The day will take place in the tranquil surroundings of Whistlewood Common where you will be invited to join Helen for a morning of Forest Bathing beneath the trees and an afternoon of creativity with artist Victoria Brown sketching and painting the spring blossoms.

Forest Bathing is comprised of a slow, gentle, mindful walk with “invitations” designed to connect you to nature for your wellbeing.
Being amongst the beauty of Whistlewood, the trees and the wonders of nature help us to relax, slow down and really notice what is around us, having a beneficial effect on our wellbeing. We will really slow down around the blossom of the trees to celebrate their beauty in a new way.

We will then break to enjoy the picnic lunch we have brought. Take some time out to chat or explore the beauty of Whistlewood at leisure.

In the afternoon Victoria will share her creative processes with you and encourage you to take inspiration from the blossoms in your own way starting with sketching and painting under the trees. Drawing and painting materials will be provided and you’ll be given a small sketchbook so you’ll be able to draw what you see in the moment to continue your own blossom project at home.

About Victoria Brown

Victoria is an artist based in South Derbyshire, primarily a painter working with oils and acrylics sometimes applying lace or gold leaf to create an ethereal glow. She became a teacher after studying at University Of  Warwick, BA QTS Honours (art specialism) then decided over sixteen years ago to leave education to follow her passion for painting and the arts. During this time she has created a large body of work exploring  a variety of subjects  which she finds interesting, beautiful and emotionally uplifting. Most often it is the natural world which inspires her painting themes including; spring blossom, water, stones, gardens, trees and flowers. Light, colour and pattern hold a fascination and she enjoys experimenting with different painting techniques which have a strong connection to textiles rooted in the beautiful Nottingham lace her family once manufactured. Over this time she has also secured funding to deliver community arts projects celebrating Nottingham lace as well as projects celebrating the natural world alongside delivering  a multitude of art workshops sharing the joy of art and creativity with everyone.

About Helen Saunders

Helen is passionate about facilitating nature connection for all. She is a fully trained Forest Bathing Guide through Nadur – Centre for Integrative Forest Therapy. She has a background in complementary therapies as a homeopath and is currently a Board Director of Whistlewood. For Helen: “Nature guides me whilst bringing me peace, stillness and nourishment for my body, mind and soul”.

Her Forest Bathing walks follow the University of Derby’s “Five Pathways to Nature Connection” – a research-based approach to Nature connection through the pathways of Senses, Beauty, Meaning, Emotion and Compassion. Forest bathing is supported by years of research from Japan, America and other parts of the world.

This event is being hosted and run by Helen Saunders and Victoria Brown.



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