Helen is the daughter of a Navy officer and grew up in coastal areas including Rhode Island, Virginia, and Southern California. She finished high school in San Diego, completed college in Hawaii and pharmacy school in Atlanta. She, her husband and two children have lived in Smyrna, GA since 1988. Helen works as a research director and part time pharmacist.
Although Helen took a couple of art courses in college, she did not pursue painting until the children had left for college and a visiting friend presented a challenge to do something new in the next chapters of life. Helen began painting by taking basic acrylic landscape classes where she learned composition and the mixing of colors, before moving on to portrait and abstract art classes. She paints in the evenings and on weekends, as time permits.
Water is a familiar and favorite subject of Helen because she is reminded of sailing with her family and husband, walks on the beach, and watching sunsets with friends. She enjoys painting scenes that feel peaceful. This summer, Helen travelled to Provence. Her most recent paintings are all from this region. Many of the scenes were painted in the places Cezanne painted. She stayed in a small town, Banon, which is about 90 minutes north of Aix en Provence and travelled to a variety of locations in the Alpes de Haute-Provence. The Luberon Valley of that region was full of Lavender. Most of the paintings were painted plein air, and two were painted after her return. Plein air painting is idyllic for lighting and perspective, but hiking with an easel, paint supplies, canvasses, standing for hours in the sun, dodging bees and other insects, created unexpected challenges. The paintings are acrylic and a retarder was used to slow drying time. Misting with water was necessary as well.
Feel free to email or to just say hello!