Laura Jones paints still life – bands of flowers in thick colour, washed in different shades of serene natural light. Her first solo exhibition, Light is Fugitive, captures pale morning, warm noon and fiery evening, with bottled blooms spilling and bending gracefully in each scene. The exhibition is currently on show at Gallery Ecosse in Exeter in NSW’s Southern Highlands, where the once Sydney-based artist has set up her studio and home.

Jones’ work with flowers is inspired by hours spent working as a florist – she still occasionally helps out at renowned Elizabeth Bay design studio, Grandiflora. “I was looking at [flowers] and touching them constantly, so when I started painting them it came quite naturally to me,” she explains. The exhibition title Light is Fugitive takes its cue from Australian artist Margaret Preston, a reference to her vibrant and timeless still-life works of the 1920s. But Jones’ work exudes the presence of her own surrounds – the rolling green gardens of Exeter and Robertson. “There are amazing gardens in the Highlands,” she says. “So I thought, why not move somewhere where I can collect my subject matter myself?”

“This exhibition is about the beauty of flowers and their capacity to remind us that life changes constantly,” Jones says. “And that there is something comforting and exciting in that.”

Light is Fugitive is on show at Gallery Ecosse in Exeter until March 21 2014.