Intoduction to Gamini Ratnavira


Gamini Ratnavira was born and raised in tropical Sri Lanka. As a self.taught artist he uses his photographic memory and life experiences to produce vibrant, colorful images of the rain forest flora and fauna, which are complimented with intriguing stories and research information about each painting. His paintings reveal his love for art coupled with an unrestrained, lifelong reverence for nature and animals.

After earning unequaled praise in his native land, Gamini moved to the United States where he continues a successful art career in Southern California. He is a member of the Society of Animal Artists and Artists for Conservation and has exhibited with Birds in Art and Arts for the Parks top 100 tours. Gamini has exhibited in shows across the United States. His work is now collected worldwide, including the prestigious R.W. Norton Art Gallery in Shreveport, LA, 43 paintings in the San Diego Natural History Museum, and Parrots International. Gamini escorted Prince Philip in the jungles of Sri Lanka and worked with him on the set of elephant postage stamps for Sri Lanka and the world wildlife fund. In all Gamini illustrated 38 postage stamps for the country. He has illustrated several species for Birdlife International. He was a member of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds. Gamini's life birdwatching list exceeds 4000 species. He illustrated several plates in the Field Guide to the Birds of Peru by Dr.James Clements and has done several commissions for Birdlife International. Gamini stayed with Sir Peter Scott and exchanged views of artwork at the wildfowl trust in England. He has traveled to over 40 countries researching endangered wildlife everywhere. He illustrated Birds of Sri Lanka and Mammals of Sri Lanka and is currently working on Endemic Birds of Sri Lanka, and a coffee table book of Sri Lankan Birds and the Freshwater fish of Sri Lanka.


Each stroke...
Hurried and researched
Each color
Expertly chosen for depth and value
Each paintbrush
Resembling the tools of eons
Each figure
Reflecting triangles of light
Each sunbeam
Catching the spirit of his laughter
Each raindrop
Enveloping the pain of his sorrows
Each eye
Reflecting the souls he has lived amongst
Each leaf
Reflecting nature as it is full of lessons and wisdom
Each masterpiece...each signature...reflecting the beauty
That only his lifetime could create.
~Lisa Warner Albright~
September 1998

In addition to leading tours to the rain forest, Gamini has illustrated several books and continues to honor the nature he loves by speaking about the rain forest and giving slide presentations to children and wildlife lovers everywhere. Gamini lives with his wife Lisa and children Neil, Beau and Brooks in Fallbrook, CA. They support many conservation projects and Prithipura Infant home in Sri Lanka in honor of their daughter's memory Natalie Ann Ratnavira (Feb.14, 1990-June 23, 2012).He founded and directed Fallbrook's nationally acclaimed "Reflections of Nature" wildlife art show. For show schedules and a visual gallery please visit his website at