top of page


Hlen Elliott




Thank you for your interest in my work.  I’m an artist and educator based in West Wales and the Yorkshire Wolds, UK. 

After being asked to leave the art class at school and told that I couldn’t paint, I developed my own painting style, influenced by the Fauvists and the Scottish Colourists, working intuitively with colour and composition.

During my thirty years as an artist, I’ve become widely collected and known for my original style, have paintings in the permanent collections of the Welsh Assembly and MOMA Wales, have been included in the "Who's Who in Art" and have painted many commissions for public as well as private buyers.

Career highlights include- a solo show at The Museum of Naive Art in Paris 2012, Artist in Residence at Vallauris, Cannes, 2015.  Also in 2015 I was selected to be one of Golden Artists Paints artist-educators, and trained in New Orleans with them, and  in 2018 I was invited to hold a solo show at MOMA Wales, showing alongside Welsh greats such as Sir Kyffyn Williams.


I’m author of Creative Me - Keys to Creativity" and a contributor to Leisure Painter, The Artist, and Artist & Illustrators Magazines.

Today I work between Wales and Yorkshire studios, teach workshops online and in-person and exhibit nationally and internationally.

why I paint

COLOUR. It's the reason I paint. It's totally my thing. Almost as much my thing as are simple pleasures ... the dog walk, the first snowdrops, the geese on the estuary, the perfect cup of tea...

"Colour is everything. When colour is right, form is right." - Marc Chagall.

I remember being completely in love with colour as early as 8 years old when my lovely Uncle George (he who had been a desert rat, and in his 70’s still sported a rather dapper pencil mustache) presented me with a tin box of watercolours.

They were a thrill to behold!

A dazzling array of row upon row of jewel-like lemons, fuchsias, and turquoises. It seemed to my eight-year-old self that I was in heaven and held the key to artistic bliss in my hands. However, this was in fact the first time I was to experience creative disappointment. The colours, when applied with a rough black bristle brush to thin newsprint paper, were lifeless. The paper wore through as I tried to apply increasing layers of the insipid colours to achieve some of the tin’s promised lustre.

After so many years I still vividly remember both the anticipation and disappointment of that event. And it's been my lifelong mission to find colour that satisfies.

I think I'm almost there.


This is what excites me about working with colour. It's not just about lemon, fuchsia, or turquoise; or the brilliant professional paints I now use; it's about the relationships between the colours. It starts with ideas such as complimentary colour schemes, which are pleasing but can be predictable. Colour is form, and when used in passages in relation to each other, in the words of Hans Hoffman, colour liberates painting from drawing. Yes. Colour liberates painting from drawing. Quite a thought.

That is why for me, colour comes first, form second. I don't see a tree and think I will paint that tree, what colour is it? I see a colour and think I will paint that colour, what form is it? Form and perspective are traditionally painted using value, (the relative lightness or darkness of the paint), with darker values in the foreground and the lighter receding into the distance. When colour takes precedence, the hue and saturation of the paint do this work, which I find endlessly interesting.

My painting practice is an endless, exciting, dance between feeling my way to colour use alternating with mindfully applied colour theory. A simple pleasure, and my happy place.


I hope that you enjoy these paintings as much as I enjoyed painting them.


get the newsletter

Thanks for submitting!

bottom of page