Helen trained originally as a textile designer. After some years as a primary school teacher in London and Scotland, she ran her own catering business in south-east London and the City, followed by a number of years in medical research.
Once her children were on the brink of leaving school Helen studied for and received the prestigious Diploma in Botanical Illustration from the English Gardening School at the Chelsea Physic Garden in London. Helen was the Course Director of the diploma course in Botanical Illustration and Painting for the 8 years years retiring from the school in December 2012.
In January 2014 she will be opening a new course under the name of The Chelsea School of Botanical Art at the Chelsea Physic Garden.
Among Helen’s students some have gone on to exhibit internationally, win RHS gold medals, one has founded a Florilegium Society and another to illustrate for Curtis’ Botanical Magazine. Several past students now teach and assist on the Diploma Course.
Helen works from her studio at home in Ham where she holds classes in botanical painting and workshops by well-known visiting botanical artists. She also enjoys travelling as a guest teacher and has recently returned from Boston’s Wellesley College and the Cotswolds.
Helen is an active member of the American Society of Botanical Artists and teaches workshops at their annual conferences.
She has exhibited at galleries in London and overseas including Ebury Galleries, the Garden Museum, the Chelsea Physic Garden and Hortus in London, Ursus Gallery, New York and the Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation, Pittsburg, USA, the National Botanic Garden for Wales, the Shirley Sherwood Gallery of Botanical Art in the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, and Hampton Court Palace. Helen’s work has been selected for inclusion in Prince of Wales’s Highgrove Florilegium and can be found in the archives of the Hunt Institute, the Chelsea Physic Garden, Hampton Court Palace and the Kew Herbarium, Library, Art and Archives Collections.
A Selection of Previous Exhibitions
2013: Treasures from a Hidden Garden: Plant portraits by the Florilegium Society, Chelsea Physic Garden Florilegium Society in the Gallery at the Chelsea Physic Garden; Painter Stainers Fine Art Society Exhibition at Painters HallTeddington Artists at the National Physical Laboratory, Teddington
2012: Teddington Artists at the National Physical Laboratory, Teddington
2011: Shirley Sherwood Gallery, Royal Botanic Gardens Kew with the Hampton Court Palace Florilegium Society, Teddington Artists at the National Physical Laboratory, Teddington
2010: Shirley Sherwood Gallery, Royal Botanic Gardens Kew with Chelsea Physic Garden Florilegium Society; Highgrove Florilegium; Marucube Gallery, Tokyo; Teylers Museum, Haarlem; Hampton Court Palace
2009: Highgrove Florilegium, The Garden Museum, London; The Huntington, Los Angeles ; Nijo-jo Castle, Kyoto
2008: Highgrove Florilegium; New York School of Interior Design; Bushy House with Teddington Artists
2007: Florimania, Hampton Court Palace; National Botanic Garden for Wales – Medicines in May
2006: Florimania, Hampton Court Palace; National Botanic Garden for Wales – Medicines in May
2004: Mall Galleries, Chelsea Botanical Artists; The Apothecaries Garden, Chelsea Physic Garden; The Apothecaries Garden, National Botanic Garden for Wales
2003: Medicines in May, National Botanic Garden for Wales; Ebury Galleries, London
2002: National Botanic Garden for Wales
2001: Hortus, London
2000: Ebury Galleries, London; Xth International Exhibition, The Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation, USA
1999: Ebury Galleries, London; Ursus Gallery, New York; The Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation, USA; Chelsea Physic Garden Florilegium Society Exhibit
1998: Ebury Galleries, London; Various Publications
2011: Richmond magazine; Art Plantae website; Weekend Telegraph Gardening Section
2010: Hunting PLC Christmas card; Surrey Life
2008: The Highgrove Florilegium
2006: The Flower Arranger
2005: The Apothecaries Garden
2003: House and Garden Magazine
1998: Country Life Magazine
The permanent collection at the Hunt Institute, USA
The archives of the Chelsea Physic Garden
The archives of Hampton Court Palace
The Highgrove Florilegium
The Kew Herbarium, Library, Art and Archives collections
By the League of Friends of the Royal London Homoeopathic Hospital of Calendula officianalis for presentation to her majesty Queen Elizabeth II to commemorate the 250th anniversary of the founding of the hospital.
By private collectors in the United Kingdom, Europe and USA