I am always drawn back to the Rainforest for artistic inspiration; always in total awe of the beauty, freshness, insane amounts of life it holds and the very life force our world depends on it for.
Prince Charles once said “forests are the World’s air-conditioning system, the lungs of the planet and we are on the verge of switching it off”.
This statement is so true and I’m so passionate in doing anything to help our beautiful planet to not just let it survive but thrive and this is where my passion for the rainforest and its inhabitants has inspired my recent artwork.
I like to do my research when planning new art, I like to delve into the environment, find out what lives there, what’s mined or farmed there and how this can be incorporated physically into my works, which animals reside permanently and which have flying visits. I like to better understand the difficulties of the place, the people and what if anything my art can do to help raise awareness of the place and the wildlife.
Whilst researching the rainforest I found 3 truly amazing things about the vast ecosystem that I hadn’t taken into consideration before which I wanted to visually represent in my artwork and share my findings with you.
- One of the most important centres for global cinnamon production and home to one of the few remaining habitats for the critically endangered Sumatran tigers in Kernici, Indonesia.
- Cinnamon is harvested just once every 10 to 15 years and most producers see only two or three harvests in their lifetime.
- In 2013 they received the Worlds first Rainforest Alliance certification, providing 9% more per kilogram to the farmers than non-certified farms.
- Every farm, locally known as ‘bidang’ are carefully mapped to protect the tigers and maximise the benefits to the farmers.
- Cinnamon ‘sticks’ are natural curls of the cinnamon tree bark; the harvest takes 10 full time farmers one month to strip the cinnamon trees, roughly generating 454kg (1000lb) of cinnamon per farm.
- Cinnamon is a inherently sustainable crop, growing alongside other native plant species providing valuable habitat for the tigers and known locally as the “grass of Kerinci” as it starts to grow back almost as soon as it has been cut.
- Global forests provide habitat for 80 percent of the world’s terrestrial biodiversity – those in which not only impact wildlife but directly impact human health; our global forests also support the livelihoods for 1.6 billion people.
- I intend to learn how much of the practices are coming from sustainable and non-sustainable methods of which I will write a future blog on this subject and present my research and how this affects my art.
- 123,000 acres of forest land is lost DAILY affecting the world’s climate patterns, reducing the earth’s protective and natural reflectivity in turn unbalancing the ocean currents, wind patterns and rainfall.
For my upcoming exhibition in May, I will be using my local rainforest as inspiration to capture the real Amazonian Rainforest with it’s lush green foliage, birds, big cats, snakes, butterflies, water creatures, fruits and flowers to create a unique series of artwork to bring awareness of the Rainforest Alliance and their work with our global forests.
For every painting that is bought from the Rainforest series, Helen will donate £10 to the Rainforest Alliance, an awesome charity working to support the longevity of our global forests, indigenous peoples, providing training in lawful practices and sustainable farming techniques that support farmers and wildlife and bring them more income through the Rainforest Alliance Certification programmes.
If you wish to find more information about the Rainforest Alliance and the fantastic work they do globally, please follow this link.
I love a vintage Vespa and this works so beautifully with balloons and flowers, I was lucky enough to have owned one when I lived in Sicily for a few years and I loved jumping on it to see the island and head to the beach at weekends.
The Vespa is such a great image, it’s a timeless piece which appeals to all ages for all occasions. It’s been used as a fun prop for weddings and never stops to inspire the idea of a romantic and thrilling way to travel the sites of Italy.
This will soon be available in my shop to buy
Canada, a place so painfully beautiful it’s hard to believe it actually exists. With its vast landscapes, huge mountain ranges that spread across the country and create insanely beautiful lakes, I just knew this commission was going to be tough!
When asked to capture a scene dear to someone’s heart that captured the beauty of Wood Lake, Oyama, B.C. I was a little intimidated to say the least!
Image by Mia Salmon (copyright)
Canada has more lakes than the rest of the world combined
With so much choice of so many beautiful views given to me, it was hard to pick just one image to paint, here’s a look at the beautiful scenery I have had the pleasure to visit.
Image by Mia Salmon (copyright)
It was a hard choice as there were so many amazing shots to choose from but I decided to choose a really simple view of Wood Lake at sunset with just a few glittering lights from the houses on the distant hills.
I love working with people to create something really special for them that captures a moment in time, a special place or memory – get in touch if you would like to have something created bespoke for you or a loved one. Prices start at £38 for 7×9″ professionally printed on archival Hahnemuhle bamboo paper to retain the beautiful colours for years to come.
As a designer I’m always open to creating new designs that fit in with what people want, I am currently illustrating a wide range of special places people have visited and have been proposed to. I have completed a city street in Paris and two of London featuring Westminster Bridge and Big Ben, one very wet and moody and the other using pretty pastel watercolours – more to follow or get in touch with images for me to use.
Choose your own colour palettes to fit in with your colour scheme and personalise with your own text and lettering
Make it special and personal, get in touch for details. The sizes and prices vary, however to keep shipping costs low I can print to ‘Small’ – 20cmx20cm with border and ‘Tiny’ 15cmx15cm with border.
Let’s make something really special
Were you proposed to in a quaint English pub? no problem! How about at the Trevi Fountain, Rome? Love it! Bow Bridge, Central Park, New York – amazing! I’m always cooking up new ideas and have my eyes open to the latest colourful pallets – get in touch, let’s make this happen!
These look incredibly stunning as an A3 print on white board, paper or canvas
Prices start from £23 for the ‘tiny’ 15x15cm but they look epic on A3!
I am busy working on new pattern designs to create a whole host of interesting and fun merchandise from adult and child aprons to umbrellas and accessories.
Sign up for updates and release of new gifts and products soon!
This is a unique piece of art by Helen Harvey who was inspired to create a collection of hummingbirds from her recent visit to see family in Canada. She was struck by how tiny and delicate the birds were, not much bigger than a bumble bee but just as busy!
The artist wanted to capture the beautiful shimmering colours, almost tropical and exotic in her design and set it against a simple ‘dusk’ inspired coloured background when the birds are most active collecting nectar from flowers and little hanging trays the Canadians leave out for them.
This piece has first been created in pencil and then painted by hand using gouache, the image was then digitally reworked and digitally printed to perfectly capture the minute detail on the birds. This has then been screen printed by hand to create little shimmering gold onto the tail feathers and wings and then reworked by hand to enhance the feathers again.
This is a special piece and only available up to 75 editions.
The art is printed on Hahnemuhle Bamboo professional archival paper to preserve the image and protect its longevity for up to 50 years. Comes complete with artists signature and limited edition number up to 75 editions.
Image A3 with border surrounding image, total paper size is A2
A3 29.7 x 42.0cm, 11.69″ x 16.53″ – image
A2 42.0 x 59.4cm, 16.53″ x 23.39″ – total size of paper
Now available to buy from my shop or Etsy page and for a limited time only at West Oxfordshire Art Gallery where the artist is exhibiting throughout November and December.
Below shows the components that have been used for the complete design concept
Siberian White Tiger started life as a pencil drawing and there he stayed in a sketch pad for 18months! He was then revisited, painted, fiddled with and a simple background was discovered lurking in the depths of an inspiring piece of art hanging in The Tate Britain.
‘Out of the Reeds’ is a simple design, easy to place around the home and the colour combination make it a nice addition to a bedroom for boys and girls alike.
Take a look at my shop for dimension to purchase. The one being held up is 30cmx30cm and fits nicely in an Ikea black or white frame and mount.
If you are interested in the design process of this piece, I have written a short blog about it. See the news feed for details.
This comes in a range of sizes, see shop for details.
Something for all the family. Some intricate designs to keep the adults happy and unwind with, some for younger children and even something for the teenager.
This gorgeous colouring book is jam-packed full of pictures to colour, paint or cut out and create 3D artwork with. Now available in my shop – they make great gifts for friends and family with a variety of pages to colour and as it is printed on heavy weight paper stock it is designed to withstand a mix of colouring mediums from paint and pastels to pencil and pen.
Take 5 and unwind!
Follow our blog for inspiration and tips.
This is hand-drawn and digitally recreated. The artist was inspired to fuse traditional Scandinavian folk art and Otomi, this piece to sit somewhere in the middle.
It features boxing hares, nightingales, doves and deer surrounded by a floral design and can be ordered in two sizes – A3 and larger A2, it looks amazing with a double mount and simple white frame.
It is a gorgeous rich red and printed on heavy weight bamboo archival paper to enhance the colour and longevity of the piece.
See shop for more details or please get in touch for mounting prices.
From original drawing, to gouache painting, colour pallet and final giraffe design.
This was a commissioned piece of art for a little boy who loves giraffes and his mum wanted something fun for his new bedroom. I have gone on to sell this digital print a few times and much to the delight of my littlest daughter she also has it in her playroom.
It is printed on Hahnemuhle Bamboo archival paper to enhance the beautiful colours and ensure it’s longevity for years to come. It has the artists signature in the bottom left corner and can be customised to include a favourite quote or name on the left of the image. Get in touch for details.
See my shop for sizing, pricing and customisation.