Big Fat Art with Jane Davies

Meet Jane.

Jane is fun, quirky, straightforward, very creative and a whole lot spontaneous!

I had the pleasure of spending all last week with Jane Davies on the Sunshine Coast of B.C. Three days of Big Fat Art and another two of Monoprinting with the infamous Gelliplate. I was definitely in my happy place spending long days just creating with no means to an end, making unexpected marks, combining new colours and exploring lots of layers.

A little ukulele playing did not hurt the process….

Big Fat Art with Jane Davies - Julie Hamilton Creative {artistically afflicted blog}

We spent the week exploring fast, carefree mark-making with various mark making tools, charcoal, water-colour crayons, ink and pastel. We combined unexpected colours, playing with opaque and transparent colours. We added texture through the use of paint and handmade collage papers.We learned how to add lots of depth to our work. We even added a few drips here and there.

We had a lot of laughs and a lot of fun.

Most importantly though we silenced the inner critic within and created with no concern for what is right and what is wrong.

Big Fat Art with Jane Davies - Julie Hamilton Creative {artistically afflicted blog}

To be truthful, it wasn’t easy. It can be a little disconcerting to try new things and work against principles that have been ingrained in you by every art teacher and book out there.

What I loved about Jane was her constant encouragement to push past what we already know and try something different, and her love for the creative process versus the finished outcome.

For me that included No imagery – no flowers, birds or other whimsical things flying around and, gasp, maybe putting some purple in my work.

Ok, some things I just couldn’t manage to push myself past, BUT look how awesome it looks below with the reds and yellows!

Big Fat Art with Jane Davies - Julie Hamilton Creative {artistically afflicted blog}

This, once again, reminds me of the importance of keeping an art journal. A safe place to try out new marks, colours and techniques. A place to make some really bad art with hopefully some unexpected surprises of greatness!

Learning from Jane Davies - Julie Hamilton Creative {artistically afflicted blog}

Here are a few of my works in progress. A few things I learned about myself:

I love strong, bold colour. I love texture, but not necessarily patterned texture. I love depth.I love discovering little marks hiding underneath different layers.I love organic shapes. I love a wee bit of black in my work. I love contrast.

I am a wee bit scared of the abstract. I still don’t feel comfortable with the tension it often adds to work.

I also learned that I need to add more areas of rest and lightness to my work. I need to take a deep breath and work on the details of each smaller piece within the bigger whole, to be more mindful and to slow down and sit with a piece before I call it finished. I need to add more interestingness to my work either by contrast, line or layering.

Learning from Jane Davies - Julie Hamilton Creative {artistically afflicted blog}

What a great week! I could spend all day, everyday, creating.

For more info on Jane please visit her website. Do not miss out on her tutorials tab. Jane is very generous with her knowledge and discoveries and has dozens of great video tutorials to share. Small doses of creative inspiration!

She also offers online and real life workshops. Sign up for her newsletter for more info on upcoming courses.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to send me an email.

Have a great week! I hope the sun is shining and the autumn leaves are in full color for you.

Goodbye Summer. Hello Autumn!

…..And then in the blink of an eye it was Fall…

Sketching Inspiration - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

I am not sure how the seasons changed so quickly, but they did. I had decided to take the month of August off blogging due to a house full of children, visitors, a road trip or two and lots of work all mixed in. Here it is the end of September and I am just finding my way back here.

Creative process - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

What can I say?

It was an awesome summer.

We did a little of this…

beach Life - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

A little of that…

Santa Monica Pier - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

A lot of this….

Creative space - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

There was no shortage of adventure, sights to see and good summer fun. I already miss it.

I am sharing with you a few links to courses that kept me creatively curious this summer. All of them from Creative Bug.

Pam Garrisons Creative Sketchbooking –  A three-part series working from journal to canvas. Lots of interesting mark making techniques and exercises  – working with your non dominant hand, intuitive drawing, paper collage and lots of mixed media.

Art journal - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

I love Pam’s use of colour and style. It was very interesting to me to see how she approaches her work. She makes it all seem so simple and random, but, wow, does she have great results. For more viewing pleasure check out #cbsketchbooking on instagram.

Art Journal - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

Next up was Lisa Congdons Sketchbook Exploration – a four-part series working from sketchbook to canvas. Lots of line work, mixed media, collage and abstract work as well, but a totally different approach than Pam’s class. She inspired me to get out my markers and pencil crayons and I have re-discovered a whole new medium which is not only easy to use anywhere, but very satisfying in the mark making department.

 Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

I managed to take a little bit away from both courses and adapt to my own style, painting and pasting my way to a finished piece.

Finally I started Yao Chengs Watercolour class, but then life got too busy and I had to put it on hold. I am looking forward to the rainy season here in Whistler to get caught up on my learning. Rumour has it that Lisa’s Sketchbook Explorations Part Two has also gone live. I haven’t had a chance to check it out yet, but I am definitely looking forward to it.

Let the rains begin!

See you next week!

Colour me Creative – Summertime Blues

I may have a slight case of the Summertime Blues. All I want and need right now is more summer.

I can feel life slowly starting to shift around here. The  mornings are damp, the air has a crispness to it and there is talk of going back to school.  I have four weeks to go until September and my plan is to savour every minute.

Cool refreshing water, grass tickling my toes, the colourful pop of flowers, blue sunny skies…

Inspired by my mood, this weeks colour palette is brought to you by the colour Blue.

Colour me creative moodboard - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

Life is just a bit crazy around here these days with guests and a never-ending stream of kids in my kitchen.

I have taken to working in small short bursts that do not demand too much concentration. Small scraps of painted cut art  are working in my favour. When I finally do get a moment of uninterrupted time, I can put them all together into something that works.

Sketchbook Explorations - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

I have also continued with my sketchbook explorations inspired by Lisa Congdon’s Creative Bug course.

Blogpost all about it here

Playing with patchwork and motifs in my art journal.

sketchbook explorations - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

Playing with patchwork and motifs in Photoshop.

Summertime Blues - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

My head is spinning with applications for these designs. As a surface pattern design I can see them on rugs, fabric, ceramics, paper and even stationery,combined with some fun hand lettering.

I feel a September project slowly starting to develop. I love a new project – almost makes me happy and excited for the Fall to roll in.

Until then, you can find me in the lake!

Enjoy yourselves,

Colour me Creative – Tangy Citrus Summer

It is hot. Oh, so hot. The temperature is rising and doesn’t plan to stop. Sunny skies are here to stay in Whistler.

When I take a look at this weeks colour palette, tangy, sweet citrus sherbets come to mind.

There is definitely the sweet feel of summer going on here.

Colour me creative moodboard - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

A few pattern swatches on my desktop. These will be some fun shapes to use when I get a chance to have fun in my art journal.

Summer Quilt - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

Unfortunately, the sound of work was calling this week and I didn’t have time to create in my art journal. Instead kitchen wall art was in the making.

I loved this assignment! I have to admit I am just a wee bit in love with all of my fruit and vegetables. I am hoping to get a chance to create some illustrated recipes for They Draw and Cook this summer. With all the fruit and vegetables coming into season, it is hard not to be inspired.

Fruit Salad -  Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

I am also very inspired by my new Photoshop skills and the mix of all of my painted bits and pieces and the digital world. This is a whole new way of working for me and I am loving it. A big shout out to Instructor Sherry London and Pattern Observers Photoshop for Designers.

LemonLime -  Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

Photoshop for Designers is a 6 week intensive class that dives deep into the magic of Photoshop. It is full of information, so much information! Videos, PDF’s, a class forum plus a private Facebook group – no question will be left unanswered.

Sherry is a well spoken, very effective instructor willing to give her all to you. She is first to jump in and explain in detail any question you may have, which as you can imagine…is many, when it comes to Photoshop.

Watermelons - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

The next class starts July 6th. It would be the perfect summer project to dive into! Head on over to Pattern Observers site  for all the details.

Enjoy your week and don’t forget to support your local farmers market!

Color me creative

This weeks colour palette ~ Mustardy yellows, reds, coral pinks and black. Warm and wonderful. Color me creative - a color palette {artistically afflicted blog} Julie Hamilton Designs I love this mood board as is! I am inspired to make some abstract art just looking at it.

My goal this week is to use these colours to create art in any medium and any style. I like the idea of preconceived colours. I find it easier to concentrate on certain aspects of art one step at a time. If I already have the colours in my head then I am already one step ahead. I can spend my creative energy thinking about my motifs, playing with lines and shape, composition. Cut & Paste Garden by Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog} It is no surprise that I love these colors. I am surrounded by them here at home.

My walls are painted ginger root, I have large red and orange patterned pieces everywhere – throw cushions,blankets, lampshades and ,of course, artwork.

Living in the mountains, my landscape is always in  shades of watery grays and blues. I want my house to be warm and cozy amongst the setting.Color me creative - a color palette {artistically afflicted blog} Julie Hamilton Designs No wasted paper in this household – I took my colour moodboard and using my shapes and colours transformed it into some art journal pages.

I am still playing in my art journal on a daily basis cutting new shapes and trying my hand at some abstract backgrounds. I have been spending a lot of time with my scissors these days.

When in doubt stick a bird on it…so I did.

mixed media collage - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}Finally, moving along from analog to digital, a little photoshop work below as I try to master the program. it is a slow process but I find that the more I play with it, the greater my understanding. Scanning has also become a big part of my daily routine now.

In my garden - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

If you follow me on Instagram you will notice that a few of these images are from last week. I hate to bombard you with the same images, but I have decided to start a weekly #penpaperpaintpattern blog series with a chosen color palette for the week and create art around it. Every week I will then post here about my discoveries. It’s a plan and i am trying to be two steps ahead.

Enjoy the week,

A bit of hit and miss in the art journal

All of my unfinished artwork makes me a tad anxious.

Half painted canvas leaning up against the wall, unfinished patterns on my desktop, art journal pages only half coloured in. All of these things make me a bit squeamish inside. I feel that everything deserves a fighting chance. Slowly, I am learning that they do not.

Sometimes you just have to walk away..

For example – this page is not going to be finished. Why? Because I am done with these flower shapes. I need some new shapes.

Art Journal Page - always a  work in progress - {artistically afflicted blog}  Julie Hamilton If I gave all of my ideas a fighting chance nothing would be completed around here. I need to decide pretty quickly if it’s a yay or a nay. I only have so much time to create. Slowly I am learning to use my time wisely and accept that not all ideas are good ideas.

The pages below are new pages I have been working on. I like them, but they are not quite where I want them to be…yet. They deserve a fighting chance though because I am learning from them and new ideas are percolating because of them.

Also, I am having fun with these. Fun – usually a good sign that things are going somewhere.

I hope this makes sense?
Art Journal Page - always a  work in progress - {artistically afflicted blog}  Julie Hamilton Lots of different colour combinations, different medium, marks and texture, layering….learning a lot from my time with these.

Art Journal Page - always a work in progress - {artistically afflicted blog} Julie Hamilton

Ok, a bit of  mixed media craziness may have been going on here, but trust me, I learned a ton from this one!

Art Journal Page - always a work in progress - {artistically afflicted blog} Julie Hamilton

Enjoy the weekend!

Everything I know I learned from my Art Journal

I have been somewhat successful this past week training my creativity to switch on at night. It hasn’t been easy, but I find that once I start it usually leads somewhere. Starting is the hardest part.

Being a bit of a morning person, my muse always has me getting up very early so it has been a nice change trying to switch things up and work at night . I figure it can go either way – I either stay up late fully immersed in my project or I get up super early, excited to get at it. Either way I am losing sleep.

Art Journal time - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

I started Lisa Congdons Sketchbook Explorations on Creative Bug. It was fast, fun and informative.. It is a 4 part program, but easily finished in an evening (especially if you have Netflix TV series training;). Lisa explored lots of different ways to just start and get something down on your page.I loved the way she used lots of different mediums layered together – water-colour, markers and collage work. I also found it encouraging to watch how she incorporated her journal piece into a piece of wall art.

I have included my pages even though they are not really finished and they are rather random.Right from lesson one, inspiration struck and I had to run with it. I have a tendency to go off track when creating and I did just that, rather well I might add..my pages look nothing like the course pages!

Art Journal time - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

Lots of ideas were springing to mind and I managed to try a little bit of everything. I believe that is the beauty of art journalling –  if you tire of one page, start another, I have found myself flitting from one page to another nightly adding marks and colours as I go. At this rate I may never actually finish a page!

Art Journal time - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}I have been  very happy to re-discover my Prismacolor markers and coloured pencils. It is so nice to curl up on the couch and have some colour so easily accessible. No water and no dirty brushes. I will be using them all in my art journal from here on in..

 

Art Journal time - Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}

My main goal for this experience is to gain some new ideas and hopefully a bit of  insight into some new colour combinations. I am also interested in combining a few different mediums that I will then be able to transfer over into my mixed media work. One thing is for sure and that is…Everything I know, I have learned from my art journal…

Next week I am going to try Dawn Devries Sokols art journal class on Creative Bug. I also have my eye on Yao Chengs water-colour class. There are so many interesting classes there so be sure to take a look.

Also on the learning front I am slowly finishing up Pattern Observers Photoshop for Designers  6 week course.

Wow!

That is the only word that  can sum it all up. Sherry London has poured her heart and soul into this one. It is full of information. Look out for more info here soon.

Well, there you have it! I was in need of something new  to inspire me, to jump start a new project. Happy to say that I found it and have a new series in the works.

The internet has no shortage of awesome classes and inspiring ideas and techniques to try.

Never stop learning:)

The Art of the Start..a.k.a potato stamping

I have had a very busy week finishing up artwork for a project and today was the first day I had to just sit back and do my own thing. I wanted to paint.

Lined up and ready to go! Mixing colours  ~ Julie Hamilton Designs {artistically afflicted blog}
I sat down with my sketchbook. I looked at some drawings I had planned to paint. I thought abstract, but then dismissed it for floral. I thought collage, but I wasn’t sure I felt like paper cutting. I thought green, no, coral.

I was getting nowhere fast. I just needed to Start.

paint, stamping, design sponge

Who would have thought? Potato stamps.Yes, a potato from my kitchen.. Having flashbacks to grade school art class?

Having lost by painting mojo with all of my indecision I ended up cruising through my inbox and stumbled upon yesterdays Design Sponge blog post here. Well, it looked pretty cool in the pictures so I had to try.

In my desperate attempt to make cool marks, I have tried many a thing from cellophane wrap to feathers. Some successful for making a good mark, some not. The potato wasn’t all that bad.

potato stamps, acrylic paint, design sponge

I doubt I will be making wrapping paper even though theirs looks great. Mine looks,well, not so great.  The lesson here for me was ~ just do whatever it takes. In my my art world that usually means trying something new.

I painted for  a number of hours with nothing finished to  show. I tried some new shapes, more charcoal and ink and some scratchy scraffito. Lots of new ideas and most importantly moments of calm and satisfaction along the way.

painting in progress, acrylic paint,  floral painting

How often do you get to paint with no game plan? Mark making just for the sake of it. Trying new colours. Playing.

I can’t even remember the last time I just played with no plan for its outcome.

A goal for 2015- more art journalling? I hope so!

Below is a journal page I did some time back. I think it was probably 2 years ago now. It has been sitting in a basket along with many other finished and unfinished journal pages. Lots of experimentation going on in that basket.

Guess what?

intuitive painting, Bloom true, floral painting

Yesterday it got licensed. (along with 8 other pieces!) More on all that later, but needless to say I am pretty happy.

Another gentle reminder to just keep at it. No artwork is ever wasted.

Feeling inspired,

PaperLove bloghop

My love for paper runs deep! My heart beats a little faster, my mind starts racing and I get a little giddy. All the colour, texture, pattern and weight is enough to make me a little speechless.

julie hamilton designs, artistically afflicted blog

The opportunities with paper are endless. It is for this reason alone that I have become a bit of a paper hoarder. I have stacks upon stacks of different types of paper in my studio ~ old envelopes, cardboard, kraft paper, handmade paper,wallpaper, old magazines,tissue paper,  stationery, maps, and even some good old scrap- booking paper. It has been bought from far away places and travelled the world and it has also been found dumpster diving in my very own community. Interesting paper is everywhere!

julie hamilton designs {artistically afflicted blog}

floral papercuts for handmade business cards

Paper can be stamped, glued, painted, sprayed, crumpled,cut and of course, written one. Oddly enough, I often forget about the good old traditional method of writing on paper. I am usually to busy ripping it up and gluing it down.

julie hamilton, artistically afflicted
I love to be inspired by my paper collection. I can admit to you, because I know you will understand,  I often sit surrounded by my papers. I put them into pretty piles playing with colour and texture. I imagine them in my art journal or all collaged up onto wall art. I imagine all the different textures that can be made in my paintings with them or how they will look with a transparent dab of paint – a glimpse of their original state peeking through. It makes me want to pull out all my papers right now and get working!
mailart,artistically afflicted,julie hamilton

More mood boards focused around scraps of paper. I love the natural feel of paper~ it can be mixed with so many other types of medium such as wood, bamboo,birchbark, and even material, yet still keep its natural feel.

julie hamilton designs {artistically afflicted blog}

papertags,birchbark,cardboard,old packaging, paint chips, wallpaper,rice paper

Below is one of my “collage everyday” pieces. I hope to continue on with this project again one day. I had fun creating daily collages based around the woodland theme. It’s a great way to put all your paper scraps to good use.

mixed media~ julie hamilton designs

wallpaper,handmade paper,tissue paper,ink and thread

And, of course, we can’t forget the lovely feel of a good, old fashioned dip pen and ink on paper. It almost inspires me to sit down and write a letter , unfortunately, I have a feeling I   would make more of a mess than anything else.,

julie hamilton designs {artistically afflicted blog}

Guess who else loves paper around our household? Yup~ Cariboo. He wanted to be part of our paper love bloghop today so here he is. Any paper that hits the ground is fair game in his eyes.

julie hamilton designs {artistically afflicted blog}

The PaperLove Blog Hop is a celebration of all things paper! Follow the links to discover more bloggers who love paper and use it to inspire and delight. And if you want to explore a whole world of paper, and stretch your paper passion further with a host of creative projects, why not join the innovative new online course PaperLove (starts March 31). Led by book artist Rachel Hazell, PaperLove is a five week creative adventure for paper lovers. Find out more here.

Come visit the other paper lovers in our bloghop today. I am sure you will find loads of inspiration!

Participant list

Majo Bautista / Tona Bell Louise Best Cathy Bluteau / Jennifer Bomgardner / Giova Brusa / Lindsay Buck / Beka Buckley / Joanna Caskie / Jonathan Chapman (Mr Yen) / Halle Cisco / Sarah Clare / Cathryn Clarge / Dawn Clarkson / Rhiannon Connelly Jenny D’Fuego / Molly Dhiman / Ian Dudley / Ayisatu Emore / Akmal Farid / Monika Forsberg / Claire Fritz-Domeney / Louise Gale / Chrissy Gaskell / Julie Hamilton / Emma Hawman / Rachel Hazell / Holly Helgeson / Claudine Hellmuth / Kim Henkel / Sarah Hoffman / Joanne Hus / Paula Joerling / Beth Kempton / Julie Kirk / Eos Koch / Katie LaClair / Kristy Lankford / Michelle Manolov / Doreen Marts Rosie Martinez-Dekker / Tori Mears / Maria Mederios / Lise Meijer / Debbie Miller / MaryJane Mitchell / Suzy Naidoo / Grace Noel / Hannah Nunn / Camilla Olsson / Jo Packham / Rachelle Panagarry / Monette Pangan / Melanie Paul Nicole Piar / Jen Pitta / Liz Plummer Julie Reed / Michelle Reynolds / Lisa Rivas Angee Robertson / Natalie Ryan / Aisling Ryan / Elisabet Sapena / Kyrrha Sevco / Jamie Sprague / Elizabeth Steele / Terri Stephens / Juniper Stokes / Mary Tanana / Maike Thoma / Linda Tieu Gabrielle Treanor / Tammy Tutterow / Deborah Velasquez / Jordan Vinograd Kim / Cat Whipple / Brooke Witt / Katie Wood Amelia Woodbridge

Playing with color

I have spent the past couple of days experimenting with color. Every once in a while I feel the need to step back to basics and  play with different color combinations.  I am in the mood to explore right now! I want to walk on the wilder side of analogous color combinations!

Why does that strike a note of fear in me?
julie hamilton designs {artistically afflicted}blog

I am definitely an analogous kind of girl.  This is not entirely by choice, but more often than not it is driven by fear. Fear of using too many colors!  Color scares me just a little bit.

Unfortunately, it does not come easy to me. I know what colors I want to use, but I find that when I combine them together they don’t always look as fantastic as my mind makes them out to be.

I love my work in black and white, but the moment I add color I start to feel frustrated and insecure with the outcome. In my painterly world, this leads to the demise of many a painting. I have many a canvas patiently waiting to be finished.

In my digital world,my art has a better chance of survival as I can play with color. Thank goodness for the command Z key. Adding color and playing with color has never been so easy.

julie hamilton designs {artistically afflicted}blog

Playing with new color combinations.

 Don’t get me wrong, I am head over heels in love with color. I get tingly, butterfly sensations when I see certain color combinations.My heart starts beating a little faster, I swoon and get all emotional. I want to whip out the paints and try to create the feeling right away.

….But, I am also fickle. One day I will be passionate about red, the next I am all over blue. I don’t even try to understand my fickle nature anymore.
julie hamilton designs {artistically afflicted}blog

Playing with photos, paint chips and a moodboard

julie hamilton designs {artistically afflicted}blog

My favorite color combination as of this week- watery blues,green and teal.
julie hamilton designs {artistically afflicted} blog

I think it might have something to do with my desire for all things summer as the weather here changes and is getting cool.

julie hamilton designs {artistically afflicted} blog

How do you keep color fresh? Do you have a secret way of collecting your favorite colors? If so, please share!

Here are a few of my favorite places for color.

Adobe Kuler app – take a pic of your favorite colors with your smartphone and let this app do the rest

Pinterest -Start your very own Color board on Pinterest and pin your fav colors to it for reference.

Design Seeds – An awesome site for color palettes.

Photocard Boutique

Paint chips from your local paint store. I love going through Benjamin Moores color magazines and seeing how they approach color for interiors.

Magazines (interior decorating home) See how other designers approach a room set up with different colors

Have fun with your art!