Helena Johnson

Helena’s interest in fine art and crafts began as a child. Helena’s great aunt was an art teacher as well as a painter and jewelry maker, so it seems somewhat natural that those are Helena passions at this time in her life.

She has painted on and off over the years in many different mediums, but now she finds that soft pastel and oil paints are her favorites. Helena likes painting landscapes, florals and learning how to do figurative drawings and eventually figurative paintings.

Helena has been very fortunate to have had oil painting classes from Harvey Schroeder, Elk River, Mn. , and most recently private lessons in pastel painting from Judy Wegenast , Arizona, and figurative drawing from Jackie Anderson, Fargo, ND.

It was after finishing college that Helena became interested in learning different mediums and took several classes at Moorhead State University, as well as workshops in painting and other art forms.

Her interest in making jewelry happened quite by accident when she saw a glob of melted metal on her partner’s welding table and thought it would make a great pin. Helena still has that piece – she did not make a pin out of it, but looks at it occasionally and still admires it. That was twenty years ago.

Helena works with copper, sterling, brass and sometimes precious metal clay. Her favorite designs are those that are made working with the torch, adding many shapes of metal to the design and heating it to a molten state, then taking the torch away quickly to let it cool. “It is exciting, you are never sure in the molten stage what the end result will be.”

These days Helena’s time is divided as a jewelry maker, painter and gallery co-owner.