Helen McMullan - Artist of the Month, November 2022

1st November, 2022

Our Artist of the Month for November 2022 is Helen McMullan

Pastel and charcoal drawing by Helen McMullan who was artist of the month for November 2022. The drawing is entitled Timidus and is part of the ACNI art collection.

Helen McMullan is a Northern Irish Artist currently living in the North Down area. She graduated from the University of Ulster with a BA Hons in Design and, after leaving college, worked for over 15 years as a Graphic Designer specialising in Illustration. Alongside this career, Helen continued to create art using a variety of media including oil paint, charcoal, and pastels, while also exploring simple printing processes and venturing into the world of pyrography. A love of Photography has been an inspiration allowing her to record the overlooked details in the world around her.

Timidus is part of the Arts council of Northern Ireland collection. Helen had previously made a series of charcoal drawings of hares, inspired by the work of wildlife photographer David Mason. The lockdown of 2021 provided an opportunity to re-engage with her passion for this ancient and elusive creature, noted for its nervous disposition. Without access to new materials, she had to make do with the resources that were available. The character of the paper being marked, discoloured and slightly crumpled, having been in her possession for many years, seemed the perfect backdrop to complement the image. The moment captured in the drawing, of the hare looking back from among the grasses of a field, perhaps just becoming aware that he is being watched but not threatened, is presented on a grand scale, so as not to be missed. Timidus was exhibited at the Royal Ulster Academy of Arts 140th Annual Exhibition at which Helen was awarded the drawing prize.