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  • Writer's pictureHelen English Artist


Updated: Sep 20, 2020

Welcome to my art blog! So, where should I start? I have so many topics which are bursting to get out onto paper but I shall start at the very beginning with why I create art!

I first remember creatively drawing when I was five, probably because we were asked to draw pictures for our stories at school. I always drew a girl, to represent how I saw myself and how I wanted to be, and I was fascinated by this. I only drew other things, like houses and cars when I was directed to. I would draw my future self and my friends, and often we would have special powers like invisibility or speed or flight.

My mum was a secretary and so had access to a lot of printing paper. Before the used paper was shredded and sent for recycling, Mum would save the occasional ream and bring it home for me to draw on. I used to sit in my room and draw and draw and draw and draw! I also used to spend a good amount of my time with friends but there was a lot of spare time to play in and that was my usual choice of activity.

I remember at a very young age working out how to draw faces and bodies so that they had proportion. I also had a wonderful great uncle, who visited every few months and was an excellent artist, and he would look at my drawings and critique them in a way which helped me improve as well as feeling good about what I’d achieved. He had been a teacher and I would have loved to have been in his class! This uncle, and a couple of wonderful high school teachers, made a huge impact on my enjoyment of art.

Strangely, it all stopped for about ten years until I got to New Zealand and somehow I became really inspired to paint, which I had always shied away from. I had used oil pastels for colour rather than paint. So I picked up a paint brush and had a go, and had a revelation when I found out that you could still control the marks which you made when you used a paintbrush!

From that point, I haven’t stopped although my art has become far more prolific in the past three years. So, back to the original question, why do I paint? I guess that the answer is that I love painting and have come to realise that it helps me to think and also to relax. When I paint a portrait, I can explore what makes the subject tick and the expression which has been caught in an instant. ..and there is no better feeling that when a painting is finished well.

If you enjoyed reading this, please email me and let me know. I would also like to know if you have any topics which you would like to read about.

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