helen amyes

from the studio


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3rd April 2016

Sometimes an art project just doesn’t “work” and goes in the bin to clear the desk and the mind to move on to other hopefully better things. This series [shown] of visual poems started with picking up some pink plastic templates from a children’s game from the ground outside the Salvos where they had been split. Working on the back of cereal packets,a ready source of cheap cardboard,for a while i played around with the shapes and mark making, just enjoying letting it go where ever, vaguely thinking it might be a series to go into KART assembling book project. Finally though, although the process was fun, something was missing or rather there was too much going on with the patterns ,the shapes and the packet text on the back also. Sometimes less is more? Accepting the still born ideas is all part of the process and self editing is an important skill for an artist. I believe that the experience of these seeming “failures” still contribute, Art is a language and making art every day in some form can only add to its fluency.P1040055


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3rd Febuary 2015


lnm001forblog


Abstract painting from new series “Landscape not made”. This work continues the theme that i am working on about the burnt areas of Tasmanian bush [forest] that is regenerating and is derived from the study notes for landscape painting.These start as small collages made in series, then i pick the best to work up bigger on ¬†canvas. media include acrylic paint and graphite on canvas.


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13th January 2015

disruption003forweb


A visual poem/asemic writing work hot off the studio table.This is part of a series i am working on called Disruption,some of which will be sent to an exhibition Networked Disruption curated by Vittore Baroni. the style of visual poetry [where text intersects with visual art] i favour, is just a shade off abstract art where the letters become just another mark in the range of available shapes.The colours are my new Tasmanian palette taken from burnt logs,grey skies and lime green new growth foliage. A sense of place comes into all the work.

media used include atelier interactive acrylic paint,alphabet stickers from the $2 shop,part of a decorated envelope sent by an artist friend, on Draw and wash textured paper by Artist Spectrum.


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8th january 2015

working in the burnt bush


Sketching for the abstract landscape series Lazarus Rises. The site i am using is the Woodvine’s Reserve Forcett,Tasmania. Many trees are still very blackened by the fires, but the green regrowth is incredibly vibrant,especially when the sun shines. Picking up charcoal to use in pictures,taking frottage [rubbings] from bark and ferns to collage into work, its almost sensory overload. After this second drawing session i got caught up photographing old tin sheets at the homestead,another obsession waiting to be explored further.

Equipment used fishing tackle box to carry drawing materials to the site,moleskine journal with one concertina page[ built in elastic is good to anchor the page in windy conditions] and lumix FX01 camera.

photograph by Paul Amyes


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1st January 2015

lazarusstudy003forblog


New work for a new year!

Collage study from a series Lazarus Rising, about the burnt landscape round here from the Tasmanian fires of 2013, coming back to life. New shapes emerge as the forest grows back.Some of the mark making was taken from a field trip to Woodvine’s Reserve, Forcett,Tasmania. This will now be worked up into a large abstract painting.

materials used include Atelier interactive acrylic paint, Koh i noor progresso aquarell grahite sticks,stabilo aquacolor pencil,dress makers tissue on Art Spectrum Draw and Wash textured 210gsm paper.

I try to use Australian made products where possible to support the industry.


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9th november

opposum bay rocks


Out and about observing and photographing rocks around Opposum Bay Tasmania, inspiration for next painting series? This was at the end of a lovely lonely beach,we only met one friendly lady on the walk back. A rocky headland with dried star fish in abundance[some collected for art making] and all these coloured rocks that were nature’s abstract paintings. Digital capture with Lumix DMC FX01 camera, a hand me down from the Other Half.Photography like this is for me essentially an exercise in looking, and note taking rather than an end product.


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31st october

hortus002


An abstract drawing from the series of eight titled “Hortus” [Garden].
Shapes taken from succulent leaves in the strong Australian light and shade with small surprises.

These works start off on a large sheet of paper which then gets chopped up to create new compositions sometimes in a random fashion. I do this in part to simplify images as i have a tendency to get too fussy. Also i like the freedom to be fairly playful and just enjoy the mark making process without too much thinking and always with plenty of loud music.This translates to plenty of energy in the work, and hopefully some happy accidents?

The frottage [rubbing] elements are taken from an op shop silver plate cake stand using the graphite stick.Gesso is scraped on with a palette knife creating a layering effect.

media include artist spectrum black ink, atelier interactive acrylic paint,marker,gesso, biro and koh i noor progresso aquarell graphite stick on heavy water colour paper.