Joan Willies (1929-2018) painted and studied Miniatures since the age of eleven. She was a member of the Royal Society of Miniature Painters, Sculptors and Gravers of London, England, the oldest professional society of miniaturists in the world. She was also a member of an elected group of miniaturists, Miniature Artists of America. Other memberships included the Miniature Art Society of Florida (Hon Member) and the Washington Society of Miniature Painters, Sculptors and Gravers, (Hon Member) the oldest miniature society in the United States.
Her favourite subjects included English cottages, children in Victorian settings, tromp Leila, still life, shade profiles, land and seascapes, waterfalls, and flowers.
She also produced collector doll house miniatures, finely detailed paintings in 1/12th scale.
Joan painted commissions in her studio, and taught Miniature painting to students aged 10-80. Her Studio produced frameable prints of the works of herself and her students. She also traveled to give workshops in many parts of North America and Europe.
Deeply concerned with the protection of the Art of the Miniature, Joan promoted the exacting standards of the 100 year old Royal Miniature Society by giving demonstrations and lectures, appearing on television and by writing articles and books on the subject.
Her memory lives on with the Joan Cornish Willies Endowment Fund that has been set up to support future students of the art of miniature and to sponsor the “Joan Cornish Willies Award for outstanding traditional miniature oil painting” – that will be awarded annually by the The Royal Miniature Society (RMS) of London, England, The Miniature Painters, Sculptors & Gravers Society of Washington, D.C. (MPSGS), and the Miniature Arts Society of Florida (MASF) in their respective annual juried exhibitions.