Artist Interview with Dani Choate

design-team-2017Today it is my pleasure to introduce the next Lulu Art Design Team Member for 2017.

Introducing Dani Choate from Pyglet Whispers. Dani is known for her beautiful mixed media artwork, particularly her cute whimsical girls.

I asked Dani to tell me about herself and asked her a few questions over a virtual coffee.

Dani Choate is a mixed media artist, designer and art journaler form Sydney. After studying Graphic Design in the early 90s she spent the next 12 years immersed in the Natural Health and Alternative Therapies industries. When her children were small she was inspired once again to return to art making. These were adventures in soft toy design, zine editions, lino & gocco printing, ATC & ACEOs, book page line art and a hobby turn at children’s fabric design.

Her current work is most often whimsical, feminine and full of colour & pattern. She displays a playful, childlike quality within each of her pieces.

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Tell us a bit about yourself and what you do.

I predominantly spend my time being a mum to my 3 young girls…7, 10 & 13. I am a mixed media artist, designer and illustrator. I am also a collector and source and sell all kinds of vintage and eclectic bits and pieces, not only online but also from a space that I have at a vintage emporium in Sydney’s Alexandria. Arting is my release, my time. The moments I can be most, myself.

How/when did you get interested in art?

I think I have always been interested in ‘making things’ and creating. I cannot remember a time that it wasn’t just a natural part of how I functioned.

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Can you remember one of the first things you drew or painted?

Aside from preschool painting and creating and at home as a child with my mum, a teacher…. I do remember a particular time when I was about 8 or 9 when I saw a stranger painting a seascape at the beach. I remember being particularly transfixed by what he was doing. I stood behind him and watched for ages until at some point he turned and offered me a small canvas board and a paint brush. He set me up next to him and began to show me step by step how to paint the water to get the foam at the top of each wave and how to paint the clouds to get a little shadow on each fold. I remember thinking it was a bit like magic!! Seriously…I must have painted that particular image a thousand times over the next few years, practicing and perfecting what I had learned from him. I was not very good at it…but I was hooked at trying to be!


What is your favourite piece of work you have created?

Recent favourites…

Do you have a favourite artist?

So many favourites… the list is really never ending. Currently I am inspired by artists like Estee McLeod, Maria Pace-Wynters, Lizanne Tran, Helmtrud Kraienhorst, Hanna Ekegren, Tina Berning, Kyoko Uematsu. Cori Dantini, Gustavo Aimar, Claire Desjardin… do I have to stop??

oppurtunity-c_wm_resizedWhat is the best thing about being an artist?

Exploration, possibilities, expression, immersiveness, stillness, clarity – the space it draws you into.

Do you like to have music playing while you create and if so what kind of music do you listen to that inspires you?

I have current favourites but they are always changing… at the moment I am listening to a lot of  Mansionair, Rufus, Palmistry and Christine & the Queens .

What is your favourite thing that you often include in your work?

Faces, flowers, pattern and colour.

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What are you doing when you are not creating?

Adulting, taxiing family members and scrambling to make a living… would much rather be arting.

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What are your favourite products to use

White sharpie, acrylics, posca pens, caran d’ache neocolour II, collage & spray paint (when I get a chance)

Do you have any tips or inspiring words to share?

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As a younger person I was encouraged to approach the world from a perfectionist standpoint. I grew up in a family where art and art making was given little importance and doing only what you were good at was valued over doing what you loved.

In my experience, this perfectionist standpoint makes it very difficult to ever begin the process of art making. If you begin to create something, with an attachment to a specific outcome, you give yourself  no room for error, no room for exploration, no room for mistakes. Yet, mistakes are important, mistakes are our teachers, mistakes are in fact, vital. Mistakes allow you to observe yourself and your responses and to explore your capabilities. Mistakes give you the gift of being able to discover your new ‘edges’ and have faith that abilities that you didn’t even know yet existed will always be ENOUGH. Embrace the mistakes that you may make within your art. They are the teachers that we can rely upon to guide us along our way.

Where can we view your work?

INSTA: http://www.instagram.com/pygletwhispers

VIDEO: http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCCq2T-XZ-aTUS4x64N5xbbA (Dani Choate)

BLOG: http://www.pygletwhispers.blogspot.com.au

FACEBOOK: http://www.facebook.com/pygletwhispers
https://www.facebook.com/danichoate.com

SHOP – http://www.society6.com/pygletwhispers

Do you have any upcoming online or offline classes where we can enjoy learning from you?

It has been in the works for a while but hopefully this year I will be holding some local workshops – will keep you posted!

 

I hope you enjoyed getting to know Dani, our next Lulu Art Design Team Member. Pop back tomorrow to see Dani in action when she creates a free tutorial for you.

Happy Creating,

Hugs,

Kylie - Signature

Lulu Art Supplies Store

Kylie Fowler Website

Artist Interview – Kate Palmer

design-team-2017

Today it is an absolute pleasure to introduce the very first Lulu Art Design Team Member for 2017.

Introducing Kate Palmer, otherwise known as SparkleTart. I’ve known Kate for quite a while now and have followed her along her creative journey. I’m sure you’re going to love her.

I asked Kate to tell me about herself and asked her a few questions over a virtual coffee.

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A bit about myself

Where do I begin, I’m a 40- something artist/crafter who likes to collect fabulous supplies.  My husband called me a ‘Sparkle Tart’ and now everyone else does as well.   I live in Townsville in QLD and spend my days working at James Cook University in Tech Support and Communications (yes I’m a total computer nerd!) and the people I work with have gotten used to seeing me with the odd bit of glitter somewhere – that stuff gets all over.  I get a great deal of joy from pottering about in my studio and from explaining to others how to use their supplies to create amazing art (perhaps because I used to be a teacher!), for some weird reason I also LOVE organising and cataloguing my art supply stash.  I don’t have one specific style, as I adore learning and creating too much to have settled into one particular look.  I adore mixed media (even before I knew it had a name!), in particular, I love mixing watercolour and acrylic products and techniques with everything.  If I’m being honest, often I just have a ball just messing about in my studio.  I really hate doing the exact same thing more than once, so am constantly evolving and trying out new ideas, supplies, and combinations.  I mostly create Art journal pages, cards and the occasional layout, canvas or off the page project and enjoy incorporating techniques, doodles and of course, there is always a little bling tucked away on my pieces somewhere!

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How/When did I get interested in art?

My grandparents had a ‘busy table’ and since they were quite traditional (kids were supposed to be quiet), I spend a LOT of time at the busy table.  There was a great supply of pens, pencils and paper and I was happy to create for hours.  My Grandpa would often sit there with me and chat as I would draw – I love those memories.  I continued to create during Primary and High school, but began to feel inadequate and compare myself to others – one of the killers of creativity.  I would say my passion was rekindled while taking my very first art class, which was a requirement for my degree in Education.  I had the opportunity to get inky, try new ideas and I found my passion rekindled (I ended up being the class tutor the following year).  Since then I haven’t stopped creating and am so grateful to have this back in my life.

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One of the first things I drew or painted?

I’ve been drawing since I can remember, the first specific thing I can remember trying to draw was ET after my Mum and I went to see the movie for my birthday. I can’t say it was a huge success. Everyone thought it was a teddy bear but for a 7 year old it was pretty momentous!  After that, I went through a horse phase for about 3 years – I think I drove my parents just a little nuts!

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Favourite piece of work that I have created?

This changes with the day. My current favourite is my watercolour galaxy – probably because Karl Urban signed it and said it was ‘Very cool’ – sigh – I DIE!  You can see it here:  http://www.sparkletart.com/rsr/2016/10/how-to-create-dark-watercolor-glalaxy-with-amazing-patterns-for-a-star-trek-journal-page.html

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Favourite Artist?

There are sooooo many artists I admire, but if I have to pick just one it would be Leonardo DaVinci – he appeals to both the artist and the science nerd in me.  I would love to go to the DaVinci museum one day.

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What’s the best thing about being an artist?

Oh gosh, the freedom to create whatever your little heart and hands desire.  When things go right the amazing moment when you sit back and look at something and realise that I made THAT!

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Do I play music while I create and what inspires me?

Sometimes. I also create with a movie playing in the background or while singing to myself.  As for what type – Everything. It changes with my mood – I love pop songs, zen music, 80’s Rock, a little classical and some blues on occasion.  My taste in music is a bit like my taste in art – pretty eclectic!

Favourite thing to include in your work?

Colour and tiny elements, patterns or textures that you can only see up close and in person.  Sometimes it’s metallic powder, tiny gem stones, small doodles, just little touches that make things feel finished for me.  Though I also rarely finish something without adding a little sparkle somewhere!

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What do I do when not creating?

I love to read, potter in the garden (I grow orchids), I love movies, I plan and organise, and I’ve even been known to play the odd computer game (dragons and treasure are mandatory).

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Favourite products to use?

Sparkles, paints, mica, sprays, embellishments, ink – if it sparkles I LOVE it!  Don’t make me pick just one, though I do love my sparkly sprays and powder paints from Lindy’s if you force me to pick a favourite.

Tips or inspiring words to share?

Focus on making your art interesting and enjoyable, rather than perfect!

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Where can you see my work?

Blog:  www.sparkletart.com

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/CraftyKatePalmer

FaceBook:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/keepitsimplysparkly/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/k8palmer/

Upcoming classes?

I’ve got 2 classes on the go right now

Creative Cardmaking Basics – hosted with Big Picture Classes online – You don’t need every tool out there to make beautiful cards! Kate Palmer encourages you to take your basic supplies further by teaching you 14 amazing techniques using dye ink pads, stamps, embossing powder, paper and embellishments. She walks you through each technique with a detailed video, sharing helpful tips that will help you master each one. You’ll wrap things up by combining what you’ve learned into a series of cards, and leave the class with a creative arsenal full of clever techniques.

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K.I.S.S.ing Class (free) on YouTube – That’s Keep It Simply Sparkly for those who need to know.    Every week there is a new video, looking at SPARKLY PRODUCTS, ways to use them, swatch them and make them SHINE on your cards, layouts, pages, art journals and mixed media pieces.  Let’s have a little fun and Make Your Art SHINE!

 

I hope you enjoyed getting to know our first Lulu Art Design Team Member. Pop back tomorrow to see Kate in action when she creates our very first tutorial for 2017.

Happy Creating,

Hugs,

Kylie - Signature

Lulu Art Supplies Store

Kylie Fowler Website

Artist Interview: Tracey Fletcher King

images (13)Today’s Artist Interview is with a lovely Brisbane artist called Tracey Fletcher King. I’ve been following Tracey on social media for a long time and love her particular style. I was thrilled when she agreed to answer a few questions for us! She has even added a couple of links to painting demos for us.  We are also excited to announce that Tracey will be one of our feature artists for our Colour Me Positive weekly art journal challenge (have you signed up yet?) so keep an eye on the blog. ~ Lisa

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Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you do.
I am an artist, illustrator and teacher living in Brisbane. I was a high school art teacher for a few years, I taught primary art, and at a university, plus privately and hold a Masters degree in Art Curriculum majoring in creativity theory and I have an amazing creative life. I spend my mornings working on illustration work, working for companies to create images for their packaging, artwork for their websites and social media feeds, and other fun stuff like that. It feeds my love of realism and keeps my skills fresh, and keeps me on my toes creatively. In the afternoons I work on large canvases which are sold mainly through interior designers, and I work on art work for my blog, and just for me. Any spare time goes into planning upcoming classes and workshops and refining my existing online classes and workshops. To say my days are overflowing with creativity would be an understatement.

 

TFK2How/when did you get interested in art?
I grew up in a creative household, and many members of my family were involved, and are still involved in creative jobs and lives. It was always part of my life and I honestly can’t remember a time when I wasn’t painting, writing stories or making crafts. It has always been part of my earliest memories.

 

Can you remember one of the first things you drew/painted?
I was always drawing, and writing, so I can’t remember my first drawings or paintings, but I do have a vivid memory of getting a set of 104 crayons from my uncle which was my most treasured possession for one summer when I was little. There were metallic crayons, and so many colours… it was just perfection in a little box.

 

What’s your favourite piece of work that you have created?
My favourite piece of work is still my blog and website header. I created it to try to capture all the things I love about tea and my favourite studio mug. It hangs above my desk in the studio and makes me smile every day.
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Do you have a favourite artist?
I love Matisse for his sense of colour, Brett Whitely for his sexy lines, and Cressida Campbell for her amazing line, and composition. I am always on the hunt for inspiration though and hit the galleries whenever I can.

What’s the best thing about being an artist?
I get paid to play with colour all day long. Sometimes the hours are crushing, and not all illustration jobs are fun, but it is amazing. My paintings and prints are in people’s homes and lives, my classes have helped people to push their own art and I get to spend all day surrounded by paint, ink and brushes. Life doesn’t get much better than that and I have no clue what I would do without it.
A bit over two years ago I was diagnosed with advanced breast cancer and was given a dire prognosis for quite some time, but art really did get me through. Making myself get out of bed to keep my blog going and to create things for that kept me sane through a long year of treatment, and since coming through and flourishing physically I have found I have flourished creatively as well. I honestly don’t think I would have had as great an outcome without art to get me through it.

 

Do you like to have music playing while you create and if so, what kind of music do you listen to that inspires you?
I always listen to music. Sometimes I get in a bit of a groove and don’t notice it too much, but I have set playlists that I have created. Some are classical music for days when my brain is on hyper mode, which is quite often, but otherwise it is a mix of acoustic playlists with people like Newton Fawlkner, Ron Pope and the like, or it is straight out pop like Halsey and Taylor Swift, but I have been known to get a bit of country on with The Civil Wars and The White Buffalo. It is a huge part of my process and the only thing I have to watch is singing along when my earphones are in. I have a seriously bad singing voice. We are talking making peoples’ ears bleed territory, but I try to make up for that with enthusiasm.

 

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What is your favourite thing that you often include in your work?

I don’t have a symbol or object that I use in my work all of the time. I tend to like things like maps, and geological survey type ideas in my large abstracts, and tea is a theme that runs through a lot as well as I am obsessed with the stuff. But I tend to be a bit of a mish mash of ideas.

What are you doing when you’re not creating?
I work insane hours… but when I am not working. I read, cook dodgy meals, avoid cleaning like a pro, and walk along the waterfront at Wynnum where I live. It is a constant source of inspiration and I never go without my iphone camera at the ready.

 

What are your favourite products to use?
I love using watercolour and ink more than anything else and I use acrylics for large canvases. I am not too particular about watercolours and tend to go for a colour rather than a brand, though I don’t believe you always need the most expensive brands. I have a huge collection though and happily justify that because I need them for work. For canvases I love golden acrylics, and some of their mediums as well but hands down the thing I love most and couldn’t live without is my fineliner making fluid which I use every day in my illustration work. That stuff saves my butt a lot!

 

Do you have any tips or inspiring words to share?
I believe that art is universal. We all need some in our lives, though we don’t have to share everything. The internet seduces us into sharing all of our work all of the time, and thinking other people have better skills than us, and have perfect creative lives and we can all fall prey to feeling inadequate. I purposely don’t share everything and I have sketchbooks that are just for me. No one sees them and they are a safe place for me to explore and express myself and know that it won’t be judged. No one said you have to share everything and it is okay to keep things for yourself. I also follow that by having my website and the website blog for business and a personal art blog that is separate. I like to share mistakes and rubbish as well as fun things on the personal art blog, but that wouldn’t be suitable on the website. I didn’t want to give up the fun of blogging and it is a great place to have fun and share things I wouldn’t dream of sharing business wise, so I keep them separate. In short make technology work around you and make sure it suits you creatively.

 

Where can we view your work?
My website and newsletter sign up is http://www.traceyfletcherking.com/
My art blog can be found at http://www.traceyfletcherkingblog.com/

 

Do you have any upcoming online or offline classes where we can enjoy learning from you?
I have a re run of my online course Delicious Paint being run again in Feb/March 2016 . To be kept updated on details on this and other classes sign up for the my newsletter on the website at http://www.traceyfletcherking.com.
I am in the middle of planning and filming a series of free basics tutorials which I am hoping will be launched very early next year, and two classes are well into the planning stages, both of which should come online next year.

 

Thanks so much Tracey! We look forward to seeing more from you throughout the year!

Artist Interview: Dina Wakley

DinaPicWe’re so excited that Dina will be visiting us here in Noosa this weekend to do 3 days of classes with over 70 lucky ladies! To celebrate Dina’s visit to Australia we have asked her to answer a few questions.

Also I’d like to let you all know that all Dina Wakley Media products (paint, brushes, stencils, stamps, mediums, etc) will be on sale in the store from Friday 27th November through until Monday 30th November so take advantage of 10% off these scrumptious goodies while stocks last.


 

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Tell us a little bit about yourself.

I am Dina, I have a hubby and three sons (ages 20, 18, and 16). I live in the desert near Phoenix, AZ.

How/when did you get interested in art?

I started scrapbooking in 1995 and stamping in 1996. Then I discovered mixed media and then started art journaling in 2005. I’ve kept a personal journal since I was nine, so art journaling was a natural fit.

Can you remember one of the first things you drew/painted?

My first art journal page was about how I didn’t feel comfortable calling myself an artist. The first face I painted was out of proportion and sort of Modigliani-esque, but I loved it because I had never done it before.

dina wakley 21What’s your favourite piece of work that you have created?

I don’t really choose favourites but I do have some journal pages I like more than others.

Do you have a favourite artist?

I love Basquiat, Jasper Johns, Raschenberg, Helen Frankenthaler.

What’s the best thing about being an artist?

Being creative makes me happy. 🙂

Do you like to have music playing while you create and if so, what kind of music do you listen to that inspires you?

Sometimes. I have eclectic tastes (Brandi Carlile for her song writing, Muse for it’s rocking-awesomeness, Foo Fighters for rock, Anouk, Patty Griffin, so many more).

What is your favourite thing that you often include in your work? (e.g. faces, quotes, birds, etc)

I like to draw people/faces. It’s satisfying to draw something that looks back at you.

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What are you doing when you’re not creating?

Take care of my family! Even though my boys are big, they still need me. We have lots of activities, etc. I like to read and cook, too.

What are your favourite products to use?

My paint of course! And I love the Stabilo All pencil and Neocolor II crayons.

Do you have any tips or inspiring words to share?

  • Done is better than perfect.
  • They’ll make more paper.
  • Oops, oh well.

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Where can we view your work?

http://www.dinawakley.com
http://www.facebook.com/ArtOfDinaWakley
https://instagram.com/dinawakley/

Do you have any upcoming classes where we can enjoy learning from you?

All my online classes are here:

http://dinawakley.com/store/


 

And of course Dina is teaching this weekend in Noosa, Australia for Lulu Art! We are so excited to have here. Keep an eye on our facebook page and Instagram for pics of our fun weekend.

Lisa xx

Artist Interview: Juliette Crane

Today we are excited to be interviewing the lovely and talented Juliette Crane! Sit back with your cuppa and enjoy. Make sure you check out Juliettes newest online course called Happy Painting.

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Also Juliette has given us the links to a couple of fun videos you may enjoy. How lucky are we as we get to see her in action! Thanks Juliette!!

Video 1

Video 2

 


 

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Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you do.

I am a full-time artist and writer. I create mixed-media paintings. Every painting has a story and I put those stories with my artwork into inspirational books, children’s books, novels and picture books.

How/when did you get interested in art?

I have always been an artist. Whether it was coloring with crayons or fingerpainting as a little kid I always loved to create and had a wild imagination. But I went to college to study environmental biology. Yet I could not stay away from the art room. I didn’t know what to do with art and graduated with degrees in journalism and fine art.

At first I went into arts journalism and worked at newspapers. It took lots of different jobs as a journalist, graphic designer, web programmer and many more before I finally became a full-time artist. All of those different jobs in what seemed like mistakes at the time now help me to run my current business.

Can you remember one of the first things you drew/painted?

I always loved color and abstracts. When I was a kid, I would lay out sheets and sheets of typing paper on the ping-pong table and drip watercolors to see what sort of patterns and combinations of color I could get.

Whenever I would paint, I would continue to create abstracts. But it wasn’t until I started adding whimsical characters that I felt connected to my paintings. Before then, I would just keep painting over my artwork again and again. But with the character, there is something in the eyes where I can feel a connection. It’s almost like looking into a mirror and I continue to paint a character into it resonates with my heart.

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What’s your favourite piece of work that you have created?

My favorite artwork is usually whatever I am working on at that time. For a while it was owls. Then last year I completed my first book. Right now I am super excited about a series of sketches and whimsical characters inspired by trees and flowers. As I have been creating them all of these stories have been coming to mind as well, so I am including these new paintings in a picture book and novel. 

What’s the best thing about being an artist?

I love being able to have ideas and to build them into whatever it is I might dream. I delight in seeing how all these creative ideas spin off of one another. It is so fun to do a sketch in the morning, go for a walk and on that walk come up with a story that I realize would be perfect to go with that morning’s sketch. Then I might have the idea that that one sketch could be a series of sketches which then inspires me to do a series of stories.

Then it all becomes a book that I can put out and share with the world. I love not ever having to hold back. I feel the same way about being inspired to combine and play with different art supplies.

I love having all of my art supplies out in the moment and just grabbing whatever inspires me, seeing if it works and trying something new.

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Do you like to have music playing while you create and if so, what kind of music do you listen to that inspires you?

I find that the type of music I am listening to while I paint completely affects what I create. I know that if I really want to feel in the flow, I listen to Andrew Bird. His  music always puts me in a good place. Often times I will put Pandora on my Andrew Bird channel And know things are going to be good.

What is your favourite thing that you often include in your work? (e.g. faces, quotes, birds, etc). Faces are definitely the thing that I always include in my work. I am especially attracted to the eyes. They really define for me what the rest of the painting is going to look like. I keep the supplies and the colors are used for my faces the same, so that I always have a template to follow. That way my imagination for the character can go wild.

Do you have a fun story to share involving your artwork?

One time I saw an owl in all of the layers of my painting. I decided to go with it and created my first owl.

That painting turned into a few more and I submitted those first owl paintings to Somerset Studio magazine. They asked me to write an article on how I paint my owls. When I mentioned the article to friends online, they said they wanted to know how I paint my owls too.

So I started teaching a few local, mixed media owl painting workshops, which then led me to start my series of online classes. And that led me to where I am now as a full-time artist.

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What are your favourite products to use?

I especially love acrylic inks and oil paint sticks. The inks are great for creating calm areas in a painting, adding a sheer solid pop of color over all of my other layers of texture, marks and paint. I use the oil paint sticks whenever I want to add an opaque but textured area of calm to my paintings. I love the creaminess in contrast to my acrylics, inks, pencil, paint pens and papers.

Do you have any tips or inspiring words to share?

I try and remember to always have fun with whatever I’m creating. If I think too much about the end result or painting what’s in my head or trying to paint like someone else, I either freeze or paint something lifeless. I also try to make it easy for myself to create every day by keeping a few favorite supplies and my sketchbook out, ready to go at all times. And I always push myself in new directions by recognizing what I am drawn to in my every day. In that way, I continue to develop my style in a way that is unique to me… and fun.

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Where we can view your work?

I have a blog, videos, shop and website at: http://www.juliettecrane.com/

I also post what is on my painting table daily on my:

Instagram: https://instagram.com/juliettecrane 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JulietteCraneArt

Google+ : https://plus.google.com/+juliettetcrane/posts

Do you have any upcoming online classes where we can enjoy learning from you?

All of my online classes are self-paced, instant access classes, so you can always sign up and go at your own pace and join the private facebook community which is super supportive and encouraging.

My newest online workshop is Happy Painting – A Mini Course, where I share my favorite supplies, techniques and characters to help you loosen up, overcome creative blocks and develop your own style.


Thank you so much Juliette for sharing your wonderful art with us!