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My Art News

Winner of the People’s Choice Award!

July 09, 2020

On Friday I received the fabulous news that I had won the People’s Choice Award at The Jury Prize.  It is Sunday and I’m still lost for words! I’m blown away that the public voted for my artwork, it really means a lot that over 1,000 people chose Gratitude. A heartfelt and humbled thanks if you dropped your entry in for me.


I’d really like to thank the Junction & Co for continuing with the art exhibition even in these difficult covid times. Also, during in lockdown they adapted quickly and continued to offer their diverse programs – virtually – so that Pilbara creatives, makers and enthusiasts could maintain a sense of community and connection.   If you haven’t already, I strongly encourage you to check out the gallery.  It isn’t just a gallery any more, they have transformed it into a vibrant, creative, diverse and inclusive place so that anyone – you don’t have to be artistic – can get involved, learn something new or simple enjoy being with other beautiful humans in a relaxed and inspiring community.

Welcome to Hedland event goes digital!

June 11, 2020

Super pumped to be have a digital stall in the Town of Port Hedland's 'Welcome to Hedland' event kicking off today! From the comfort of your sofa see all the great businesses, organisations and performances this remote Western Australia town has to offer. It will blow your mind!

And of course, if you need a unique gift, pay a visit to my shop - I've got originals, prints, ice blocks and cards.

2020 The Jury Art Prize Finalist

June 04, 2020

I entered Gratitude into my local art awards and she made it as a finalist in The Jury Art Prize, along with 50 other regional and remote Western Australian artists. You can see ‘Gratitude’ in the flesh at The Junction Co. and Courthouse Gallery+Studio. 


My little dog and I have walked this stretch of beach often in the last 5 years, but definitely more so during covid lockdown when I found myself waking before sunrise.  Of course Mack loved this as it guaranteed a walk.   


Sunrise is a magical time of day, but especially so at Hedland's Pretty Pool creek. At low tide the vast stretch of beach collects pools of seawater amongst the delicately formed sand ripples. These, together with the wet sand, reflect the sky perfectly like a mirror.  In this pastel painting I wanted to capture the cusp of sunrise bursting onto the horizon, rich reds and vivid oranges slowly turning the darkness of dawn into deep purples.

2018 Hedland Art Awards Finalist

September 30, 2018

I'm one a 111 finalists selected in this year's Hedland Art Awards.  ​


If ever there was a place to be pleasantly lost in one's thoughts, Hamersley Gorge is the perfect daydreaming spot.  In the north-west of Karijini, further afield than the other gorges, it is well worth the visit.  It is a dramatic gorge, with a sharp, steep decent into colour and texture.  Swirls of rock look like they have been folded and at the bottom, visitors are met with waterfalls that rush into tranquil pools that create perfect still reflections of the unique rocky strata. 

Stop work for surgery to fix my spine

March 22, 2018

Around about now I was hoping I could say that I’m returning to work. I developed a prolapse disc in my neck in early February and treatment so far hasn’t worked. It’s been a very difficult 5 weeks, I’ve been in chronic pain and have been sleeping sitting up at our dining table or propped up on the sofa, my world has come to a complete stop. Surgery is now the only option so today I’m having the disc replaced. Naturally I’m extremely anxious because the surgery comes with a number of risks, being so close to my spinal cord. This chapter has been character building for sure and a reminder that we shouldn’t take our health for granted. It’s also revealed that I have some pretty fabulous people in my life, I couldn’t have got through it without my wonderful family and friends, cheering me on and giving me lots of moral support...and chocolate or flowers. I’m especially thankful for my better half, he’s been a tower of strength, both literally (the poor bugger has had to do absolutely everything as I’ve been so immobile) and emotionally (he’s been there to wipe away many tears these last few weeks). I guess that’s what the marriage vows meant, in sickness and in health. Damn lucky to have him I am!! Once I get over the surgery I’m really looking forward to getting back to my dusty easel, I’ve missed creating, it is certainly as much a part of me as having ginger hair! Hopefully that’s mid May, can’t wait!

Part of a new local collaboration - The Junction

January 31, 2018

I’m really excited to share that I’ve joined forces with 10 local artisans. Hedland’s entrepreneurs can achieve amazing things, but we also know we can’t do everything alone – it’s our collective power that will help our businesses thrive in the Pilbara. Aptly named ‘The Junction’ our goal is to create shopping experiences that are not only a crossroads for meeting each maker and creator, but also offer a relaxed, enjoyable meeting place for shoppers. Our next event is a pop-up market held in Dalgety House, inside we will transform the museum into a beautiful shop and outside in the leafy courtyard, shoppers can discover a relaxed place to sit and unwind. The more adventurous can take part in our fun and interactive mini workshops - including my Pimms & Pastels workshop (Sat, 3 to 5pm, see my events section). We are kid and pet friendly, you can purchase refreshments and of course browse a whole array of quality wares. Here’s some photos that I took from the very first Junction, just to give you a taste of things to come. 


The Junction:
Fri 7 Sept | 5pm - 9pm (with pop-up bar)
Sat 8 Sept | 9am - 5pm
Dalgety House, corner of Anderson and Wedge Streets

Great week at Albany Summer School

January 18, 2018

It's been an amazing week at the Albany Summer School with my Pet Pawtraits and Landscapes in pastels workshops and I think the results in these photos speak for themselves. I have thoroughly enjoyed every single day and to be honest I'm a little sad that it is all over. Both classes took on the tools and techniques with such enthusiasm and I was really excited how everyone's artistic style developed over the 5 days. We are already talking about next year's workshops, if I was lucky enough to be invited back I'll be here in a flash!


I also really want to thank the Albany Summer School committee, they are incredibly professional and organised. There are over 50 tutors over two weeks who teach a range of subjects. It’s a great event for the people of Albany and South West WA to come and try new things. But I also appreciate that a lot of hard work goes into making that happen. It’s months of preparation and I have been utterly impressed with the way they pulled it together, my students and I have nothing but praise for you guys!

View Workshop photos

Second workshop tour with Jacksons announced

January 01, 2020

I'm delighted to annouce that I'm doing a second tour with Jacksons Drawing Supplies here in Western Australia. I'll be running two workshops which are both Open Theme, what that means is you can bring your own reference photo to work from. These are: 

  • Landscapes  - enjoy working on your landscape subject matter – such as trees, fields, rolling hills and cityscapes 

  • Seascapes  - enjoy working on your seascape subject matter – such as beaches, oceans, streams and creek.

To book simply go to Jacksons and pick the date and Jacksons Store you would like to attend. 


Winner! - Cliftons 2017 Art Prize

November 30, 2017

I woke up on 1 December to the news that I've won the Cliftons 2017 Art Prize for Perth for my pastel seascape, 'Moments of Mine' Cottesloe Beach, Western Australia. Huge congratulations to the other winners in Hong Kong, Singapore, New Zealand and the eastern states of Australia, it is such an honour to be counted amongst these nine talented artists. I really can't quite believe it, it was enough for me to be selected as a finalist back in October so to win my region, well, I'm pretty speechless and surprised and happy and frankly a little dazed! I'm celebrating with some champers and a rather large bar of chocolate and that's just breakfast! The awards are open until 15 December at Cliftons Perth, Parmelia House, 191 St Georges Terrace and here are all the 2017 Asia Pacific winners. 


Moments of Mine | Cottesloe Beach, Perth Western Australia | pastels on primed paper | 65.5 x 51 cms



New Greeting Cards Launched

November 15, 2017

I'm delighted to share my new range of artwork greeting cards. There are 10 in the range and include my seascapes, landscapes, a flower and a pet pawtrait that have been digital printed onto card. I have two sizes, either 17 x 12 cms or 12 x 12 cms and both are printed on 270 gsm smooth white card.  The envelope is 115 gsm natural recycled paper with a lick and stick seal wallet flap.  Each card is blank inside for your personal message, suitable for all occasions. 

View my range of Greeting Cards

Albany Art School, Pet Pawtraits In Pastels Workshop announced

October 31, 2017

I'm delighted to announce I will be teaching at the 2018 Albany Summer School. This course runs for 5 days and will be held each morning. 


DATES:  Monday 15 to Friday 19 January 2018

TIME:  9.30am to 12.30pm

VENUE:  St Joseph’s College, Martin Rd, Albany, Western Australia


Join Helen Komene to master how to create a pet pawtrait in pastel pencils. In this creative workshop you will learn drawing techniques and how to start, values (light, medium and dark tones) and how to create texture and length of animal fur. If you are a beginner and haven't used pastels before, you will receive lots of guidance, so you are in safe hands. If you have used pastels previously, we will build on your skills and will help you further develop your artistic style.


SUITABLE FOR: Beginners, Intermediate (16+ years)


BOOK & PAY: Albany Summer School website

Albany Art School, Landscapes In Pastels Workshop announced

October 31, 2017

I'm delighted to announce I will be teaching at the 2018 Albany Summer School. This course runs for 5 days and will be held each afternoon. 


DATES: Monday 15 to Friday 19 January 2018

TIME: 1.45pm to 4.45pm

VENUE: St Joseph’s College, Martin Rd, Albany, Western Australia


Join Helen Komene to master creating landscapes in pastels. You will start by learning observation skills together with how to draw and create perspectives. Then you will master pastel techniques, both blending and drawing, so you can create a beautiful landscape. If you are a beginner and haven't used pastels before, you will receive lots of guidance, so you are in safe hands. If you have used pastels previously, we will build on your skills and Helen will help you further develop your artistic style.


SUITABLE FOR: Beginners, Intermediate (16+ years)


BOOK & PAY: Albany Summer School website

 Port Hedland Courthouse Gallery 2017 Art Battles

October 25, 2017

Last night I participated in the  Port Hedland Courthouse Gallery Art Battles. There were two rounds and we had 30 mins to create something to a theme. The first was 'Heat' and I painted the Saltworks at dusk when the day's heat radiates off the land. The second was 'Closer' and I created a seascape because it's were I feel most connected and closer to Mother Earth. What a fabulous night it was and I'm pleased to say both my pieces sold. My seascape went to my youngest ever customer, Aisha who is 10 years old!

View Art Battle photos 

Finalist in the 2017 Clifton's Art Prize

September 18, 2017

I received some news at the weekend, my entry 'Moments of Mine' was accepted as a finalist into Cliftons 2017 Art Prize. Every year local artists across Asia Pacific are encouraged to enter. Once finalists have been selected, Cliftons hosts a three month exhibition at each venue to showcase the finalists’ artworks. So if you are in Perth CBD between 11 October and 15 December, check out my piece at Cliftons Perth, Parmelia House, 191 St Georges Terrace. 


Here's my Cottesloe beach entry and why I was inspired to paint it.

ABC North West Interview

August 10, 2017

I was lucky enough to be interviewed by ABC North West, here's their video

A very big thank you to Susan Standen, Digital Media Maker & Curator for doing a fantastic job.  I was a little nervous about being filmed but in the end it was like chatting to an old friend, thanks to Susan.  She spent two days with me, at home in my studio and attending one of my pastel workshops.  It's really great that the ABC take the time to profile people in remote towns and communities, it's a big privilege to be part this!

In the final cut she has featured many of my customers' paintings from the last year - can you spot yours? 

Busselton & Perth workshop dates announced!

January 25, 2017

I'm really excited to announce that I'm travelling to Busselton and Perth in March to deliver a range of different workshops.  

To read what's available head over to my Book a Workshop

Freo Bazaar Markets - 2, 3 and 4 December

November 24, 2016

Next weekend I will be at the Freo Bazaar Markets as part of the Pilbara Westend Collective selling my brand new ice blocks, as well as my limited edition prints. 

They make a beautiful Christmas gift. They are a 9x3 inch acrylic block with my 'Midday Rush Hour' original pastel painting printed on the back, together with a foil underlay which gives the white of the surf a 3D quality. 

So if you are at the markets make sure you swing by the Pilbara Westend Collective to see all our Pilbara makers, including mueslinyoghurt, gypsyrose and Spinifex Hill Artists

New Workshop announced with Craft Bound in Perth

August 26, 2016

I'm very excited to announce that I'm partnering with Craft Bound to hold a workshop in Perth.  There you will learn pastel techniques, be guided through how to prepare your paper and then follow simple exercises to create two A5 sea pastel paintings

Level: Beginners
Date: Saturday 3 December
Time: 1.30pm to 5pm

Venue: Royal Park Hall, North Perth - free parking

Go to Craft Bound website for more details and buy tickets

2016 Cossack Art Awards - Pimms & Pastels Workshop

July 29, 2016

Check out these photos from Saturday afternoon’s Pimms & Pastel workshop at the Galbraith Building in Cossack. Using still life inspiration, these fellow Pilbara artists created some magic while playing with pastels and sipping on Pimms and lemonade. 


A big thank you to the City of Karratha - specifically Jessica Snook - for successfully managing the 2016 Cossack Art Awards and the related program of events. A heart felt thanks to ECM for their generous financial support for this workshop.  And to my fabulous husband who made the trip with me to Cossack to help me set up and take photos – he’s a legend!

View Workshop photos

I'm the first PUBLIC PROGRAM for Cossack Art Awards 2016!

June 19, 2016

I've been asked by the Cossack Arts Awards to be part of their 2016 program. It is such an honour, they are one of the biggest awards across Australia and I'm beyond excited!


Our first PUBLIC PROGRAM announcement for Cossack Art Awards 2016!  It is our Pimms & Pastels workshop, presented by ECM.  Join Helen Komene for a relaxing afternoon with pastels whilst sipping on a delicious Pimms!  Workshop is FREE but spots are limited, to register your spot email

Opening night of my debut solo exhibition

May 05, 2016

Such a fantastic opening by the Port Hedland Courthouse Gallery, thanks to everyone that came out and celebrated with me, fellow artist Janelle McCaffery and the Tjanpi Desert Weavers. Approximately 300 people came which was a fantastic turnout, especially as it rained all day!  Last night was a memory I will never, ever forget. The best part was talking to Hedland residents and art enthusiasts about their holidays or camping weekends in my sea scenes.

View opening night photos  (courtesy Bewley Shaylor)

A lazy afternoon with Pimms & Pastels

May 27, 2016

In the cool shade of the Courthouse Gallery palm trees, Hedland locals spent a lazy afternoon sipping pimms and playing with pastels.  With a selection of paper types the 22 attendees completed some informal still life drawings of flowers and vases, while others decided to make up their own impressionist paintings using the array of colours provided.  Check out the photos to see everyone's fantastic creations! 

See Pimms & Pastels photos

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Check out my time lapse videos to see how I work

Read my tips on how to get started with soft pastels

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