This month’s artist is Helen Jones, whose limited edition prints of an original painting are exclusively available through our online shop.
Helen Jones draws large-scale work, using the natural world and the tempestuous relationship of the elements as her inspiration. The images are often unsettling and awe-inspiring – even making the observer feel fearful.
“I always wanted to be an artist, but the pathway to achieving that was a difficult one,” says Helen. “After starting my career and then having two children, I managed to get back into art. I did several part time courses at Windmill Hill City Farm and the RWA on Queen’s Road, and then completed a degree in drawing at Bower Ashton, UWE’s creative arts campus, in 2010.”
It was during her degree that Helen really found her feet as an artist. “Bower Ashton was an amazing place to study, on the edge of this great city but surrounded by beautiful countryside,” she says. “For budding creatives, it had the best of both worlds. It was crucial to my creative development, confidence, and love of the vast scope of the art world. It really did change me forever.”
Having lived in South Bristol since 1995, Helen is very much embedded in the city. She has a studio at BV Studios, Bedminster, where she produces much of her art, and also teaches art in several educational settings across the city, sharing her knowledge with others. “I believe that being open to creative experiences enriches our lives, and I really enjoy getting to share my skills, understanding and experience through teaching,” Helen says. “I regularly teach children with dyslexia at the Belgrave School on the Downs, and also teach older people at Monica Wills House – a fantastic residential estate in Bedminster.
“Encouraging playfulness and confidence in the exploration of art is my constant aim, and I’m keen to help my pupils find the level, subjects, medium and techniques that fit their ability and motivation,” Helen continues. “I really enjoy teaching and seeing my students’ joy at what they are capable of producing.”
Helen’s practice generally begins with the application of pastels to tracing paper, smoothing and smudging the marks with her hands. “I then remove the pigment with pencil erasers and abrasive materials,” she continues. “I do this over and over to build up a complex and layered tonal image.”
Profits from artwork sold through Bristol24/7 will be donated to Studio Upstairs, who support people to go through recovery and treatment with the help of art.
Stay up-to-date with Helen’s work by visiting www.helenjonesart.com
Read more: Artist of the month – Oliver Sidaway