Helen Trevisiol Duff

Helen Trevisiol Duff is a practicing figurative painter/printmaker and tutor living in West Yorkshire. She studied art in Bristol and life drawing at RWA. She has a BA (Hons) Fashion textiles/ illustration and is qualified in adult education. She is an avid supporter of the charity Explorers Against Extinction and exhibits annually at OXO Gallery London.

The British landscape and wildlife motivates and informs her work. In particular, she is drawn to light, colour, negative space and pattern in her paintings and collagraph prints.

“My artwork is essentially figurative, created by a combination of my memory of places and feelings that emerge as I get lost in the process of mindfully working on the piece. I often work on several pieces at one time within a train of  thought. I combine several methods in one piece, from initiating and creating a plate, to hand finishing by applying metallics in layers. I start with how the landscape moves me and the patterns I see. I use my sketchbook to record what I see and then let my imagination and memory take over.

Concentrating on my illustration work and paintings for many years, it was only when I moved from London to West Yorkshire in 2021 that my love for printmaking returned. The move meant that I was out of my usual studio for a while working from my home environment and so I took to going to the Arthouse in Wakefield and WYPW in Mirfield to engage in various printmaking methods.

As time went on, I became more absorbed into collagraphs. Inspired by the landscape and the seasons changing over time, extreme and diverse weather conditions became all consuming. Living in a rural farming location, nature became my everyday obsession. The lay of the land, climate, the harvest, growth, textures and colour became my focus. I felt energised and these changes are a constant feed to my emotions and wellbeing. How my environment and the weather makes me feel informs all my work. I can’t walk very well so my vistas are what give me joy. There’s nothing to beat being high on a hill with the wind blowing a gale and taking in all the sensations.

Feeling grounded and part of the earth has given me a sense of freedom.

How the piece makes me feel is as important as the end result which is created in my unconscious mind. I want to convey how I feel about the structure of land or wildlife using simplicity in essence.

I’m inspired to create as it’s instinctive and my response to what’s around me is compulsive. I also have a disability which can be very painful and creating art takes my mind and soul into another world where I leave behind the pain and find peace, tranquillity and calm.”