About the Artist
About the Artist H.S. Ashmead
As a painter and printmaker, H.S. (Helen) Ashmead creates artworks depicting her favorite subjects – the flora and fauna of nature – angels – everything of the natural world and beyond. Strong, pure colors are frequently employed by the artist to evoke feelings of joy and sensations of light.
An award winning artist, Helen’s works have been exhibited throughout the south and northeast, and are included in collections across the country. She conducts classes and workshops in painting and printmaking.
Helen holds a B.F.A. from the University of Connecticut. She completed graduate work in drawing and painting at the Hartford Art School of the University of Hartford, while studying under Rudolf Zallinger of Yale University. Continuing study includes printmaking with Barry E. Wilson of Jacksonville, Florida, and portrait painting with Patricia Whitty of New Orleans, Louisiana.
As a lifelong learner, she remains committed to strengthening her skills, vocabulary and scope as an artist.
How I got started in art
Drawing came naturally to me as a child. I never remember not drawing. And I was very fortunate, because my mother and my teachers encouraged me.
My mother was creative. She played the piano and used to draw pictures for me of beautiful ladies in profile. She had art books that I used to love to look through. They transported to other beautiful worlds.
My favorite painting was Monet’s “Field of Poppies” in her book, Art Treasures of the Louvre. It was mesmerizing to look at it. I just wanted to crawl inside the picture. I remember gazing at it and thinking that I wanted to paint something as beautiful as that. It became my standard for judging whether or not a painting was truly great – if I wanted to physically crawl into the picture.
I used to think that if I could just paint something as beautiful and joyful as Monet’s “Field of Poppies” that I would be very, very happy. I guess I made a promise to myself then. I wanted to paint something that would last through time, something that would be worthy of hanging in a museum, and something that would give people joy just to look at it.
My mother passed away when I was a little girl, but she had given me the encouragement that I needed to never give up on my quest.