Born in Bradford, Yorkshire, May Tremel began her training as an artist at Goldsmith’s College and progressed to the Royal College of Art where she learned engraving and printmaking techniques under Sir Frank Short and his assistant, Constance M. Pott. She exhibited intermittently at the Royal Academy and other major exhibitions between the years 1907 and 1936 and was one of the international etchers invited to exhibit at the First International Exhibition of Etching at the Art Institute of Chicago.
May Tremel lived in the London area of Barnes from around 1907, moving to Beckenham in southeast London on the edge of Kent by 1911. She moved with her mother and her sister to the Kent countryside during the 1930’s, where she lived in a substantial house near Sevenoaks for the remainder of her life. May Tremel's earliest etched works appear to date from her time at the Royal College of Art; however, her style remained remarkably consistent throughout her life. She produced at least 60 original intaglio works, all of topographical landscapes in England and near Europe. In general she used pure etching or drypoint, only occasionally resorting to the use of aquatint.
All of May Tremel's residual printing studio, was acquired by Campbell Fine Art - this included all of her remaining etching plates. Just over half of these plates are copper, the rest are zinc - all were wrapped as the artist had left them and are in excellent, original condition.