Helen L Robertson was born in Cumbria and grew up in West Lothian. After graduating from Edinburgh College of Art in 1987, she spent the following year at the Royal College of Art in London.
Helen settled in Glenshiel after visiting her sister, and falling in love with her partner Tich and this very special area.
Helen works with soft pastels on an artists archival sandpaper.
“There is something very satisfying and primal about applying the pure pigment with my fingers, which gives me a direct connection with each painting.”
She loves the instant impact and textural qualities of pastel, building up her paintings in layers of colour, giving them a sense of depth and luminosity.
Over the years Helen and her family have explored the Highlands and many of the Outer Isles.
“Camping gives that intrinsic feeling of closeness to your environment and you experience the elements at first hand. Absorbing the atmosphere by sketching and taking many photographs, I then recreate these feelings in my finished pastel paintings back in my studio.”
Admirers of her work have often commented on how the paintings make them feel transported to that place.
Helen is constantly looking to reinterpret the landscape, finding her own unique direction.
“Recently I have been attempting to capture the wetness and shiny reflective surface of the sea and the wet sand it leaves behind, with this dry medium.”
Ultimately, it is the contrast between shadows and light which drives, excites and inspires Helen.
Whether the deepest shadow beneath a pebble or the drama of a silhouetted figure against a sun drenched sea, this fuels her impulse to capture her feelings in pastel.