Issue date: 
Article type: 
Meet the team

Juliet Best has been Life Flight’s artist-in-residence over the last three years and has been such a delightful addition to the team. 

Juliet Best Artist.jpg

Juliet Best Life Flight Artist in Residence
Juliet pictured at her studio in Shelly Bay. Photo credit: Lindsay Keats -

Painting since a young age, Juliet has always been interested in creativity and the arts. She has now been a professional artist for 15 years and working full-time from the Shelly Bay art studio and gallery for the last nine years.  
The talented and friendly artist began her term as artist-in-residence after nearly needing our Westpac Rescue Helicopter to help her son after a fall in Abel Tasman National Park. "He just took a stumble and rolled badly on a knee that he had already damaged, down a sand-dune. All I could hear was screaming from across the estuary. We were fortunate there was a nurse in the same DOC hut as us." says Juliet. "She was able to tend to my son and her family helped us get back to the boat. However, it made me consider how lucky we are to have Life Flight in our community.”
Juliet is aware that an important part of being a Kiwi is enjoying the incredible outdoors that we have at our fingertips. “That’s not necessarily giving you the license to go out and do something overly dramatic or dangerous, but it feels fantastic to know there are some amazing people who can help you, if something happens.”  


Her love of New Zealand and the stunning landscapes around her is the soul of Juliet’s paintings. “If I was a poet, I would write poetry about New Zealand. I’m a painter and an artist and I just paint this wonderful country, I love it.” She paints with strong horizon lines, elegantly blended colours, highly textured landscapes and lots of luxuriously layered gold-leaf. Part of her signature style is the use of  gold-leaf to portray the light glowing and bouncing off New Zealand’s iconic rolling hills and mountain ranges.

Juliet has each year donated an original painting for the live auction at Life Flight’s Gala Dinner which has been a highlight of the evening. To inspire her painting for one of the events, Juliet went on a training mission with Life Flight’s Westpac Rescue Helicopter team. When she first met the team for the training mission, she couldn’t believe how calm and kind they were and it opened her eyes to how in a moment of distress when someone needs Life Flight, it would be so reassuring to be in their hands.


“It's a real honour and a perfect match to be Life Flight’s artist-in-residence.  We’re in the same local area and I just love how the service is so unique and so community oriented.” - Juliet Best

To see Juliet’s incredible works, you can head to