helen amyes

from the studio


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11th Jan 2017

working in series

ideas board and small collages

Making a body of work,is an important stage in the development of any visual artist.Firstly now I do try to “start with the end in mind” i.e. where do I envisage this work going to be seen/exhibited.In the example above, the end goal was a large painting for submission to the Glover landscape exhibition.Having said that where possible I do use material created for as many applications as I can i.e. some of the collages in the picture went on to become textile designs, home decor items,prints and cards.I used to use visual diaries a lot to build ideas and collect research, but now i take an A1 sized sheet of MDF painted white [ or several] and make an ideas board with photos,sketches,textiles,painted colour tests etc. This creates a bigger visual field and reminder, and from it I carry on to paint and collage,play ,construct and destruct, pinning up the works on a wall, until I have something I like enough to work onto canvas. I like the work to take on a life of its own, and have some ambiguity and not be too controlled i.e. tight, so working in this way with paper mostly at first keeps things free and inexpensive. Some bodies of work go straight off into the world and some remain incubating awaiting completion. The experience of making work in series is a vital part of my practice now and a way to try to keep myself on track.

 

 

 

 


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11th June 1016

P1020909Art in the strangest of places? This delightful creation was snapped in the Town Hall as part of York’s annual ag show. The creativity that went into the plain biscuit decoration category was something to behold, The werewolf ones next door were also amusing and memorable, I dread ever being asked to judge these events! I also look out for the vegetable sculpture section and marvel at the creations there, often much more fun than anything found in a contemporary gallery where the same themes often seem to leave one feeling rather flat….

 


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4th March 2016

Working in series,these little “picasso fish” were created from Tasmania’s Mercury newspaper and posted off to various mail artists and assembling book projects to “swim” through the postal system, or some were wrapped in newspaper envelopes with “chips”from old cookery books. Making multiples like this is fun as one idea leads to another and the work feels more like play, or a series of experiments. Sadly one recipient, the Australian artist Richard Larter “Dick” had passed away.

 

P1030907


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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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21st january 2015

flipflop001


Altered film photographic print. Flip Flop or Aussie” Thong”,at the base of a boat house,Ochre Beach,Dodges Ferry Tasmania. Film lomo colour print 100 ,camera Holga 135 BC ,hand painted with gouache and inscribed with intaglio print making tool.

Altering these “duffers” i.e. prints that were rather dull, has been a lot of fun and is sort of leading to a series.Well received on Red Bubble [Thanks Guys!] and good for the wallet as recycling/ reusing everything is vital to a sustainable arts practice.Knowing that the lomo photography would be a rather hit and miss affair [and that is part of the appeal] hand altering the prints is a nice cross over to painting and scratching the emulsion surface feels pleasantly taboo, like cutting up old books for the first time, or planting a yarn bomb.


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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