Press "Enter" to skip to content


Helen is regularly commissioned to write texts for international publications, including artist monographs, exhibition catalogues, edited books and arts magazines. Featured here are selected examples which reflect Helen’s diverse expertise in photography.

Helen is available for new writing commissions – get in touch via e-mail

Photography and the Family Album

The Living Memory Project (2020)

A commissioned essay on the traditions of the family album for the book of The Living Memory Project, which celebrates photographic collections and life stories from across the Black Country, England.

Kodak, Shopfront Display, ‘Give a Kodak’

‘Prince Albert, Photography and Scotland’ in Studies in Photography

Scottish Society for the History of Photography, Winter 2020

The bi-annual journal ‘Studies in Photography’ aims to be a catalyst for discourse on Scottish photography.

‘Photography and Politics in The Woman’s Dreadnought’ in East End Suffragettes: the photographs of Norah Smyth

Four Corners (2018)

This essay was included in the publication which accompanied the first ever exhibition of Norah Smyth’s photographs at Four Corners, London, in 2018.

‘Portraiture as Question: Reflections on ‘You Get Me?’ (2017)

A commissioned essay on the work of photographer Mahtab Hussain.

Installation photograph © Autograph

Interview: Marilyn Stafford (2017)

This interview accompanied the exhibition ‘Stories in Pictures 1950-1960’ at Art Bermondsey Project Space.


© Marilyn Stafford

Cinema Portraits: Transforming Traditions in Nollywood Portraits: A Radical Beauty

Skira Editions (2016)

A commissioned essay on the traditions of cinema portraiture, for the publication which accompanied exhibition ‘Iké Udé: Nollywood Portraits’ at the Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago.

Audrey Hepburn: Portraits of an Icon

National Portrait Gallery, London (2015)

This publication accompanied a record-breaking exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery in 2015.

The book has subsequently been published in multiple language editions including German and Japanese.

Interview: Todd Hido

This interview accompanied the publication of Excerpts from Silver Meadows (Nazraeli Press, 2013)

Of the Afternoon (Issue 5, 2014)

Interview: Glen Erler

This interview accompanied the publication of Family Tree (Kehrer Verlag, 2013)

Of the Afternoon (Issue 4, 2014)

Man Ray Portraits 

National Portrait Gallery, London (2013)

Author of a detailed illustrated chronology for this book on Man Ray’s life and work.

Detail of front cover of Man Ray Portraits

Exhibition review: ‘Lifework: Norman Parkinson’s Century of Style’ at the National Theatre, London (2013)


Wenda Parkinson in a coat by Aquascutum, Vogue, November 1947 © Estate of Norman Parkinson

Collections: Lucia Moholy (2012)

A commissioned essay examining the life and work of modernist photographer Lucia Moholy.


Bauhaus Building, Dessau, by Lucia Moholy, 1926 © Estate of Lucia Moholy

Brian Duffy: The Man Who Shot the Sixties (2011)

A commissioned essay on documentary fashion photographer Brian Duffy for the exhibition catalogue of the Ballarat International Foto Biennale.

Fashion for ‘Vogue’, Florence, 1964 © Estate of Brian Duffy