Pulling the Strings – Helen Peel Gallery

Image source: Photographer Ian Waldie

John Caruso profiles a local artist who has a few surprises in store for Noosa Open Studios.

Helen Peel is a popular local artist who has been part of five of the last six Noosa Open Studio trails. Best known for her rich portraits and lifelike scenes painted with exquisite detail, her stunning art is created in a luxurious, light-filled studio in Noosa Waters.

For Helen, inviting people into her home studio is a rewarding part of the creative process. 

“I love the experience of talking and explaining to people the journey involved with each piece; why I created a particular piece; how I created it – and I want to flesh that out into a little story on each painting and have that displayed next to each piece,” she said. “I’m working on a new little passion, called A Night with the Strings. I’ve painted a violin, a cello and a viola they’re one-and-a-half metres by nearly one metre, framed. 

“I’ve also painted ballet slippers in all different ways, so it’s just a different theme for me this year and for Noosa Open Studios, I’ll have some props to accompany my paintings. For example, I’ve got some bows to go with the strings and opera glasses and sheets of music.” 

Working exclusively with oils, Helen is an accomplished realist, bringing stories to life with light, shade and movement,
in exquisitely delicate brushwork and luminous, vibrant colours. 

Visit Helen as part of Noosa Open Studios at 31 Shorehaven Drive Noosa Waters, 1-3 and 8-10 October from 10am-4pm. Other times by appointment.

Want more? Hear Helen’s interview on the Everyone Has a Story: Conversations from the Sunshine Coast and Noosa podcast. 

About the Author /


After 30 years in radio, John now runs the Conversations IN Noosa podcast and in between being our writer, sanity checker, accounts manager, event MC, and delivery boy; he spends time with his first love, recording a daily Drive program for regional radio from home (often in his pyjamas); and presenting Saturday mornings on Hot 91.1. He has previously worked for FoxFM Melbourne, Triple M Brisbane and SeaFM, as well as managing and presenting on ABC Sunshine Coast.

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