Don Heywood, a graduate of the Leicester College of Art and a lecturer at the London College of Printing, is a distinguished and widely exhibited British painter specializing in portraits and wildlife studies. His work has been exhibited at the Royal Academy, The Tryon Gallery and the DM Gallery in London. He was awarded a Mention Honorable by the Societe des Artistes Francais of 1977 after an exhibition in Le Grand Palais Champs-Elysees. Most of his recent work has been exhibited throughout the United States, culminating in an exhibition at Cartier 5th Avenue New York.
His most significant achievement in portrait painting was a commission to paint a life size portrait of the H M Queen Elizabeth II in Buckingham Palace. This was completed in 1992. Other distinguished sitters have included Major General Lord Michael Fitzalan Howard, GCVO, CB, CBE, MC. Colonel of the life Guards and gold stick to H M The Queen. The Officers of the Life Guards, Household Cavalry ( Group portrait of forty Officers).
Don Heywood lived in South Africa and a book of his portraits of indigenous tribal people THE VANISHING FACES OF SOUTHERN AFRICA was published in 1994. H M Queen Elizabeth graciously accepted copy number one. Since then Don Heywood has concentrated his talents on his first love Wildlife Portraits. Subsequently a book of his Wildlife work was published. WILDLIFE PORTRAITS of Southern Africa Copy Number one of this book was graciously accepted by H R H Prince Phillip. This book was chosen by Hatchards of Piccadilly as one of ten books (out of a choice of over 50,000) as their choice to commemorate their 200th Anniversary.
Since the publication of this book Don Heywood has continued to concentrate on painting Wildlife, especially Endangered Wildlife and subsequently produced a portfolio called The Smithsonian Endangered Species Collection. To commemorate the 25th Anniversary of CRC a special portfolio was produced. This portfolio contained 12 prints of various Endangered Wildlife Species with which the CRC are most involved. These images were carefully selected by senior staff members of CRC. Selection based not only on the degree of Endangerment but also reflecting the range of CRC involvement and geographical distribution.
Following the Smithsonian Project, Don Heywood was approached by; Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Club to paint 3 Top Tennis Stars ( Pete Sampras, Martina Navratilova, Bjorn Borg). Following this Commission, he has continued painting Portraits and Wildlife ( See Latest Works).
Don Heywood's superb imagery and his love for the natural world shines through all of his work. "Professionally and spiritually, the people and animals of the world's wilderness have made a profound impact on my life. Now they need our help and I am truly fortunate to be able to use my talents to do that in some small measure." He is a man who is truly committed to the conservation of the world's wildlife and indigenous cultures.
Don Heywood has been a resident of Malta for the last ten years. And says, “After living in South Africa, I find Malta very safe and friendly. The cultural history is amazing, The climate is perfect,the clear blue skies and sea, inspire me to paint. This coupled with some of the nicest people you could wish to meet. I wouldn’t choose to live anywhere else."