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Don Heywood made his impact on the art world with his portrait commissions of famous British people, the most significant being the commission in 1992 of a life-size portrait of Queen Elizabeth II of England.
Don often visited South Africa and was fascinated by the variety and artistry of traditional dress of black Southern African people. He travelled extensively in Southern Africa, painting fifty full colour portraits illustrating the diverse wealth of costume in African cultures, creating a record for posterity of customs in danger of vanishing under the pressures of rapidly changing societies. The collection, entitled "Vanishing Faces" is the only such comprehensive work painted by one artist.
Don also fell in love with wildlife, began painting animals and became involved in wildlife conservation in South Africa and the US. He painted 12 of the endangered species studied by the Smithsonian Institute's Conservation and Research Center for their 25th Anniversary. Limited editions were made from the originals and proceeds from sales were donated to the Institute. A major exhibit of the originals was held at Addison/Ripley Gallery in Washington D.C.
In South Africa, Don was a founder member of the Peace Parks Foundation, a Patron of Endangered Wildlife Trust and was very committed to Cheetah Conservation. He published two books featuring his paintings, "Vanishing Faces" and "Wildlife Portraits", the first copies of which were accepted by Queen Elizabeth II of England and Prince Philip. "Wildlife Portraits" was chosen by Hatchards on their 200th Anniversary in 1997 for their list of top ten books representing the best in British Publishing (The Hatchard Collection).
The Royal Academy, London; The Tryon Gallery, London; DM Gallery, London; Everard Read Gallery, Johannesburg (SA); Addison/Ripley Gallery, Washington DC; Le Grand Palais, Paris; Sabin Gallery, Mayfair, London; Solomon Gallery, Dublin.
H M Queen Elizabeth II; Officers of the Life Guards, Household Cavalry (Buckingham); Prince Galatzine, (ex-Russia); King Goodwill Zwelithini; The Hambro Banking family; Michael York; Monseignor Gilbey; Major General Lord Michael Fitzalan Howard; Wimbledon Champions.
HM Queen Elizabeth II; The Macgillicuddy of the Reeks; James Fairfax; Christopher Blangey; Cisco Communications; The Officers' Mess, Cumbermere Barracks; The Castle, Smithsonian Institute, Washington DC; Gustav Zumsteg; Ned Twining; King Goodwill Zwelithini.

Heywood graduated with a BA in Graphic Design from the Leicester College of Art, London, in 1966, after which he designed and illustrated books, and also lectured part time in illustration at the London College of Printing for three years.

In 1977 he received an honourable mention by the Société des Artistes Français after an exhibition in Le Grand Palais Champs Élysées. His work has been exhibited at the Royal Academy, the Tyron Gallery and the DM Gallery in London.

As a painter, Heywood is strongly influenced by the American Realism school, especially the works of Andrew Wyeth, James Bama, Robert Bateman and a number of the Hyper-Realists. The Dutch and Italian schools of the 16th and 17th centuries also have an impact on him.

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Title: Cheetah
Size: 45 x 46 cm
Media: Oil
Price: R 18 000 Framed
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