I was born in New York City in 1954. I attended Sarah Lawrence College and then Kirkland College in New York, along with a brief stint at Rochester Institute of Technology’s master’s program for photography, also in New York state. Straight out of college, I worked for several years at the International Museum of Photography at George Eastman House, both in the exhibitions department and in the offices of the curator of Twentieth Century Photography. After the Eastman House, I led a patchwork career including working as an actor in children’s theater, an owner of a photographic art gallery, a real estate agent, an antiques dealer and even a president of the board of two homeless shelters. All the while, I have pursued my art.
I am a resident of Belmont and have been working as a photographic artist for over 40 years.
Helen Morse’s work combines the mediums of photography and painting. Linking these two mediums as both photographer and artist was natural for her and the result is unique–sometimes whimsical, sometimes erotic, sometimes fantastical and surreal. Many artists depict what they see, others depict what they feel. Morse’s work achieves a combination of the two. She uses both paint and lens to manipulate natural reality into something uniquely her own.
“My greatest and best influence came from my incomparable photography professor , Steven Liebman, back in college. His emphasis on thought and intention over technical process resonated for me and still does. He and I are still fast friends. Over the years, I have used many types of cameras, but always with the notion that more expensive equipment, bigger and better cameras and lenses were not entirely necessary- not at least, for the types of images that attracted me. Many are still surprised to find that some of my best images were taken with an inexpensive point and shoot. A camera is nothing more than a a light tight box with a hole in it which takes the scene it “sees”, capturing it as a permanent record. A camera is like any tool. It depends on the mind, the eye and hands that guide it for the resulting image. I make photographs as a window into my own heart and mind. Some are manipulated, some are not, but all are from my particular view of the world.”