Featured Artist of the Month- Nicole Hamilton

Plum Branch Final


Nicole Hamilton

March 2017


What is your favorite medium to work with? I love using charcoal for drawing because of the range of values and for painting I enjoy the rich buttery texture of oils.

What is your biggest inspiration? My biggest inspiration is seeing how light can make almost anything I see so beautiful. One of my favorite quotes from Aaron Rose states this perfectly, “In The Right Light, At The Right Time. Everything Is Extraordinary”.

Could you describe the common thematic elements of your work? I am drawn to the details of life and a common theme I come back to is trying to tell little stories and portray memories through those details. The sunlight on a person’s smile, dramatic lighting on a cherished heirloom, or the glow on a simple lightbulb help me find visual ways to tell different stories and represent shared memories.

When did you get started painting/drawing/felting/ knitting/etc? I can’t remember a time when I have not drawn or painted. I have a drawing I made when I was three years old and it is one of my most treasured possessions.

Do you have any advice for those new to art? I would like to say this specifically for new artists. I used to be concerned my art wasn’t ‘important enough’ to bother making. That I couldn’t make fine ‘art’, it was a job for someone much more important, talented, better educated, etc. Then one day it became really simple and I thought ‘why not me’? My advice to new artists — please make your art, you also have a very special story to tell, through your eyes and through your heart.

How has your style developed over the years? I truly believe a style can’t be forced and by doing the art over time your style will emerge on its own. A recent shift in my work came when I committed to painting as much from life as possible. My awareness to atmosphere has grown and that has created more dimension in my work. I always want to push myself and try new things.

What was your absolute favorite moment in your artistic career? (first show/piece sold, moment when you found your certain style/preferred medium, etc). My all time favorite moment was presenting a portrait of a young woman to her family. I never met the beautiful girl I was privileged to paint. She died at 19 after fighting cancer for 5 years. She inspired so many people in her life and I was honored to be commissioned to make a painting for her family. There were many tears the day of presentation and I realized the magnitude of how art can affect people and what a gift I could give to someone.

What would you like to accomplish out of your artistic career? What do you think your work stands for? I want to tell more stories through my art and collaborate with people to help tell their stories in a visual way. I hope my work shows integrity and a commitment to making the painting or drawing as strong as I possibly can.

What is your favorite museum/ art gallery? (can be local, global, it doesn’t matter). The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Fun question- if you were awarded a $10,000 art grant, what would you use it for? I would use it to begin a local drawing atelier to help students build a foundation in classical drawing methods.

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