I first became obsessed with Helena after watching her process in the JANE BIRKIN video below. My eyes were literally GLUED to the screen. I mean hooowwwww?! Whaaat!? In an industry where everyone is working SO hard to stand out as "original", Helena does so effortlessly and with an overwhelming amount of talent. I HAD to share her with you ladies!
After digging in deeper to learn more about Helena and chatting with her about how she developed such a unique creative process, I was softened to learn that this is a woman who is not only taking mixed mediums by storm but she is also kind and genuine and wholeheartedly dedicated to the evolution of her work. Helena is the type of Artist who makes you feel PROUD to be a part of this community and I'm both humbled and honored she took the time to share her insights and personal story with us. Keep reading to discover more about Helena Pallares and her unique approach to this problem-solving process.
Who is Helena? Where are you from? How did you become the woman you are today?
Helena is a 33 year-old daughter-sister-friend-
She become the woman she is today by loving with passion the people and the things she loves, being very curious, not hurrying up for taking decisions and trying to learn from the mistakes she made.
Tell us a little bit about what drew you to your medium. Did you choose to work with said medium or did it choose you?
Definitely, it chooses me but I can't say exactly when it was. I started to paint with oil when I was doing my degree in Beaux Arts and I already loved to paint women faces in a very colorful and minimalistic way. At that time I found the collage by studying the work of the Dada artists and I immediately wanted to try to do something in the same style. In the beginning, I experimented with the collage by mixing papers and oil painting and little by little I left the painting aside and I focused on the collage.
Your style is SO unique, can you tell us a little bit about that and how you developed this style?
I always work with the technique of collage and even though I have several ways to work with it (handmade, digital, with paper, digital textures, cuttings from old magazines, etc.) I can tell for sure that my favorite one is the collage that I mix with handmade drawing. This is a technique that I started to develop two years ago when I decided to work on big format but I didn't find what I needed in the magazines. I used cuttings from pictures of old reviews from the '20s and the 50's: I cut the eyes, the nose and the mouth of the photo models and I used them to create different faces on my works.
But when I passed to a bigger format I realized that the pictures were too small and that limited me. It was at this point that a bulb lit up and I thought that I was not bad at drawing and that maybe I could make my own "cuttings" at any size that I wanted. That's how I get down to draw the main features of French musician Serge Gainsbourg. I drew in pencil the eyes, the nose, the mouth, and the ears and then I cut the forms as I used to do it with the magazine clippings. I created the rest of the portrait by using only color papers, cutting them with the shape of the hair, the face, the neck, etc.
I simply loved the result and that was the beginning of something new to me. It is a hard technique because I assemble the pieces like a puzzle, it's not about drawing the whole portrait and then pasting the paper shapes on it, I do it on the go. I like to dedicate the time that every part of the artwork deserves. I'm quite proud of this technique since it was actually a creative way to resolve a problem that finally helped me to grow as an artist. And also because it's probably not new as a technique but it's definitely not a very common.
What do you know for sure?
That there is nothing for sure.
Finish this sentence, "I never leave home without my..."
Mobile phone and my earphones.
What's your guilty pleasure?
Red wine and french patisserie
What's your dream partnership/collaboration/
brand to work with?
I would absolutely love to work on cinema by doing a poster artwork of a film by Pedro Almodóvar.
What's your biggest strength as an entrepreneur? What's your biggest weakness?
My biggest strength, that I never give up, I fall and I pick myself up (with a little help from my friends) and I start over again, I forget bad experiences quite easily and I believe in what I do.
The biggest weakness, that I compare myself too much to others, I don't make good use of my time and I want to do many things at once.