ART BY HELEN
 

 ABOUT HELEN MARTIN 

 Growing up in Santa Cruz County, California I was always drawing.  My mom said she could tell what was going through my head by the scraps of paper she found all over the house – brides, babies, horses, dress designs and house plans.  Art classes in Jr. High and High School produced posters, prom bids, cartoons for the school paper and the giant Willie Wildcat head that the football team ran through at every home game. 

Never one to be happy with just one medium, I went on to take lots of drawing and painting classes through various Community College and Adult Ed programs.  As a result, I’ve painted everything

from tiny greeting cards to a ginormous sun face with exterior house paint to silkscreening custom t-shirts.  My current canvas (aka home) has a palm tree on the bathroom wall and a “rock” backsplash in the kitchen.

My employment resume could hit about 17 pages if not abridged.  It doesn’t matter now - I’ve been retired for eight years.  Though it looks like I was a bookkeeper and office manager, there’s also sales and marketing, hotel management, computer graphics and CAD, and a smattering of travel writing.

Yes, I’ve traveled.  It started with my husband and I and our little girls moving to Australia in the 60’s.  Since then I’ve been to Great Britain a number of times.  I’ve hiked in Switzerland and spent weeks in the Caribbean.  Mexico, Bermuda and Hawaii have seen my footprints in their sand.  We’ve

backpacked up and down the Sierras, through the Marble Mountains of northern California, the Jarbidge Wilderness in northeastern Nevada and the White Clouds in Idaho.  We’ve been back to Australia, checked out Fiji, explored Vanuatu, delved into the historical sights of the Marshall Islands and Micronesia, traipsing around the kingdom of Tonga, and joined into island life in the Cook Islands.  All this time I’ve been taking photographs and scribbling madly.  It’s been great fun and my head is full of fabulous sights and wonderful memories.
Living at the base of the Pinenut Mountains east of Gardnerville, NV on an old homestead that we’re slowly renovating has given me the opportunity to absorb the scents and light of this sage covered landscape.  I’m trying to get it down on paper.  Often it’s just little scenes that catch my eye while out on a back road.  But sometimes it’s just part of our back yard.

 I’m currently a member of the Carson Valley Art Association.  It’s been good fun working with other members on the shows and committees.  I’ve had the chance to meet some wonderful people and I’m sure this is one of the reasons I feel that I’m part of this community after living here a relatively short time.  We’ve visited this valley for decades.  So glad we now call it home.  And there’s so much stuff to draw!