Helen Salter




About The Project…..

Upon enrolment of our courses, all of our students are invited to be part of our exclusive Art Therapy community.  Here is where you can share and support one another as you experience your own Art Therapy journey.

This private group is very active and has members in more than 190 countries.  As part of the development and growth of our students, we encourage our members to really engage in the community by taking part in our weekly projects.

This community project was looking at the way Constable painted atmospheric scenes, and the techniques he used in his work.

The exercise was to produce a landscape painting using a limited palette to explore depth and perspective.

After being voted the winner by her classmates, we invited Helen, to share with us, her own art therapy journey and her experience of studying with us.

Artist name:  Helen Salter

My journey as an artist:

As a child I loved art class. As an adult I loved designing, home decorating and creating things. I dabbled in sewing, jewellery making, paper crafts etc, I was always creating something. I also loved to paint but I didn’t feel I was good enough, so at first didn’t pursue it. In 2014 after my parents passing I was guided to “play like a child”, to find my meaning or purpose in life. I didn’t understand how “playing like a child” could be my life purpose, or how it could lead me to it. It felt to me like a waste of time, but I followed that inner voice and began to draw. At first it was mandalas, zentangles and abstracts on cardstock. I would lose time, hours, whole days creating. Sometimes I would draw all night. Then last year I came across a mixed Media course. I fell in love with texture. I love bringing pieces to life, birthing them. They feel like my children. I like to use reflective properties in my work to give a sense of movement or illusion, a multidimensional feel. I feel my art has a voice, a story to tell. I create intuitively mostly without planning. I work through spirit or a higher sense or self while creating. I believe everything holds an energetic value. I feel the purpose of my art is to convey that energetic value or story.  Recently (since the death of my daughter), I discovered arts therapeutic values.  Another path for me to investigate.

What was your inspiration behind your winning piece?

The inspiration behind the piece was John Constable’s, Study Of A Elm Tree.

When I looked at his piece it struck me that the trunk was old, weathered, yet it still stood strong, regardless of its adversities and regardless of circumstance.  It survives. It’s resilient.  Even after a bush fire, trees regenerate. Trees bend with the wind. That is what inspired me to go with the tree and to paint my interpretation of his work.

What’s your favourite medium and style of art?

Abstract is my favourite style. I love trying to find meaning in lines, shapes and colour. It’s like working a puzzle that’s hidden from view, like going on a treasure hunt within a painting.

Once I would have said my favourite medium was pens, but now it’s acrylic paint, gesso and modelling paste! I love texture, colour and most of all bling. Anything that reflects light within a painting….. glitter, crystals, gem stones etc.

Courses I’m enroled in:

– Art Therapy The Self

– Art Therapy for Self Healing

– How To Use Art Therapy With Other People