Sunday, 23 September 2012

A few paintings have a new home

I am fortunate to have people interested in my artistic endeavours, and as such, they are interested in having them displayed in their home.

Here is a set of 3 pieces that go together well - on their mantle next to a piano (a soft spot in my heart)

Wednesday, 4 July 2012

Wednesday, 20 June 2012


Been working on a new song on the piano and I love the challenge of writing music. I close my eyes and compose and invent. Since I have never taken any formal music lessons I have relied on my "imagination" and have been blessed with the ability to write songs. Apparently my neighbors (TV film crew) heard me singing and playing the piano the other night and one of them wanted to knock on my door to listen to my music. I was very touched by the feedback and complements on my music and decided to give this person one of my CD's. Merci!

Thursday, 29 March 2012

Some new creations

Brought out the watercolor paints, a flower stamp, ink, some watercolor paper and made these cards this morning.  Once again I am reminded why I love watercolors and how much fun it is to get lost in making art.  I love the discoveries, the surprises, the dance of colors and meditative qualities of this medium.

Sunday, 11 March 2012


Been on a creative wave lately and playing guitar (yes, I have decided to ignore my piano for a bit!) and as soon as I picked up the guitar the beginnings of a new song emerged.  I find that when I take a break from songwriting and go back to it I am ready to write a song.  It is a strange and mysterious process.  Finding that right melody and extrapolating words from your soul is such an amazing experience.  Pure bliss!

Sunday, 26 February 2012

Blue Chinese Brocade Fabric

I had found this gorgeous fabric and decided to make some small pillows with it.  
It glimmers and shines in the light in the living room.

Music in the family

I found out that my second cousin is also a musician.  He has been living in Europe for the past 10 years, and now is coming to Canada for awhile.

I ended up going to GTA for Family Day weekend, and took the opportunity to watch his performance at C'est What ?.
A very talented singer/songwriter and he has recorded 10 albums.

To see/hear more, visit his website.

A new piece - on a wall

My painting entitled "Golden Sky" in now hanging in Toronto in a young women's very cool place.  It flows well with the colours in the room, and its metallic and reflective hues make it shine and sizzle in the room.  It's one of my largest pieces, and its good to see it hanging on a wall.

Some wonderful feedback on my work

I asked for some feedback from the wonderful people who recently bought my paintings
(from the GNO - Nouveau Louvre)

I was fortunate to receive two emails back - both in French.

Thank you for the feedback - it's important to us artists to know how our work inspires others.


C'est le troisième de vos tableaux que j'achète. Deux sont sur des thèmes musicaux dans des tons de bleu et de rouge (avec quelque bleu épars) ; ils ont deux ans d'intervalle, mais s'inspirent de la même harmonie de couleurs et de formes (des cubes, des triangles, des mouvements aléatoires, même de traits de crayon dans le plus récent). L'autre est bien différent, d'une autre inspiration, fondamentalement bleu, avec des gris métalliques et des oranges égarés qui l'émaillent ; toujours abstrait. Il s'agit presque d'un jeu d'astres et de firmament, dans une galaxie éloignée. Je les aime bien. Et je vous remercie du plaisir que vous me procurez à regarder vos tableaux.
Qui vous salue.

J'ai acheté ta peinture "Renewal" au Nouveau Louvre. J'avoue que d'habitude, j'ai tendance à acheter au Nouveau Louvre des peintures d'artistes que je connais personnellement, mais évidemment, ce n'est pas le cas cette fois-ci. C'est dire que ta peinture a su me rejoindre sans avoir l'avantage de provenir d'une personne qui m'est familière.

Je ne connais pas grand chose aux arts visuels, donc je ne pourrais pas t'expliquer en grande théorie ce qui m'a plu dans ta peinture.

C'est une petite peinture abstraite, une composition à quatre couleurs assez vives et lumineuses (le vert est presque fluo) que je trouve très bien choisies et harmonisées: un mauve, un vert, un bleu et un blanc. De fines lignes droites noires, plus ou moins horizontales et verticales, traversent la composition. Le cadre métallique vert convenait si parfaitement à cette peinture que ça m'a certainement aidé à l'apprécier.

L'effet que ça me fait d'une manière mystérieuse, c'est un genre de joie calme. J'apprécie ça parce que souvent les oeuvres d'art sont chargées d'angoisse (et bien sûr qu'il faut parfois explorer ça), mais celle-ci, en tout cas pour moi, ne l'est pas. C'est un petit peu aquatique, comme des reflets à la surface d'un étang aux eaux vertes où le ciel bleu se réfléchit, mais en même temps pas du tout, parce que c'est juste un jeu de couleurs et la présence du mauve n'a rien à voir avec cette impression.

Je trouve aussi que les couleurs sont celles de l'air du temps. Je ne sais pas pourquoi, mais je les trouve contemporaines, comme les couleurs de notre temps. Je ne veux pas dire par là que notre époque est calme et joyeuse, mais je dis que ce langage chromatique me semble appartenir à l'actualité, comme si elles étaient à la mode ou dans l'air du temps.

J'ai accroché ta peinture dans le bureau où je travaille chez moi, près de la porte de sortie, de sorte que je jette un coup d'oeil dessus chaque fois que je sors de la pièce. C'est comme un genre de petit mantra visuel pour moi: une petite impression de joie, comme si je prenais une gorgée de café ou de thé.

Alors voilà quelques mots pour te remercier et t'encourager. J'irai voir ton site pour entendre des chansons quand j'aurai un moment.

Bonne chance et bon succès dans ton art

New Poem : Reflection

I can feel the music
Running through threads of past and present
And between
And in the discovery
Some of the mystery
I see him through you
In subtle ways
Or maybe I just want
To see
Or believe
So I am thankful
To have caught a glimpse
The spark
The creativity
And the reflection
That has taken me
To then and now
Words on the surface
Songs in the heart
I can now let it be
I can now smile.

Friday, 3 February 2012


Been playing with paper for awhile, whether it be die cuts or embossing - it's all interesting to work with such a simple item such as paper and get some amazing results.

I am also having fun with the camera system used to take these photos


Friendship is such a beautiful thing to have in your life.  I have been corresponding for years with a wonderful friend who is a singer/songwriter from New York.  Allie is a kind and gentle soul and inspiring.  She is blind but she can play guitar, write songs and she is also gifted with the written word penning a book.  She was the first blind person to graduate with a Masters from Fordham University.  She lives her dreams and her dreams are unstoppable.  I am honored to call her a friend.

She will soon be moving to Spain and you can follow her adventures at 

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Thoughts on paper


When I paint I love to incorporate as much color as possible.  Sometimes I do a series of "blue paintings" or "red paintings" or just go with what I am feeling that particular day.  Color can make you feel energized or calm you, stir up memories, refresh, renew and the list goes on.  I just know that I am drawn to color and my eyes are always looking at something whether it is a colorful object or a painting or nature.
I fell in love with this glass piece while visiting a gallery in North Bay and during the drive home couldn't get it off my mind.  It was exquisite and breathtakingly beautiful.  Why did it resonate with me?  There was a vibrancy and energy about this art that was unexplainable just felt.  A myriad of colors that made me feel something.  Oh the power of color!  Thanks to the artist Sergio Golod for creating such a wonderful piece and it now sits on a table across from my piano and inspires me.

Tuesday, 17 January 2012


I remember spending hours upon hours sewing clothes and entire weekends devoted to creating new outfits during my youth.  I made my very first dress when I was twelve years old!  My girlfriend and I each decided to venture into sewing and we wandered into the most exquisite shop called the Uptown Silk Shop.  Row upon row of the most gorgeous fabrics could be found there and it was one of my favorite past-times hunting for that unique piece of fabric.
To this day, I still love textiles and color and making something from nothing.  I have made hats, pillows, curtains, dresses, skirts, quilts etc.
My Grandmother was a seamstress and made me the most amazing dresses when I was little and to her I am thankful for such great inspiration!

Mary Szeto and Julie Shephard
Mary Szeto and I, and my handmade dress 

Monday, 16 January 2012

Pink Pillows!

Made these wonderful pillows from a fabric that I found in Peterborough.

Thursday, 12 January 2012

Beauty of Winter

It is snowing today, big fluffy snowflakes falling from the sky. I love to go for walks in the snow and find inspiration from nature. 
With camera in hand I will take some pictures of trees.  As much as we complain about winter it truly is magical if we can see past the cold and find the beauty that is bestows.

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Art Room Revamp

Today I am rearranging my art room and clearing the clutter to make room for new projects.  

There are too many paintings, frames and miscellaneous stuff enveloping this space.  Since I paint/sew/design/write songs etc. this room has to be multi-functional.  Ideally would be nice to have a bigger space but thankful to have a room to express my creativity!  

Now I have a designated area for painting supplies and paper, an area for sewing and design and an area for music.  

Getting there and seeing progress!


I love this quote.

Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.  - William Morris

Friday, 6 January 2012

Caramel Walnut Banana Torte

Been on a cooking wave lately maybe due to the fact that I have had family home for the Christmas holidays.
I decided to make this wonderful cake with my brand new KitchenAid mixer - a different type of creative tool.  It's a real pro-style mixer, powerful but easy to work with.  Certainly a new tool to learn how to work with.  
Little did I know my entire morning would be consumed making this lovely creation but sure was worth it!  
I have never made a cake from scratch and have to admit was proud of how this one turned out.  Now everyone here is worried I am going to become a pastry

Caramel walnut banana torte

Caramel walnut banana torte

Each day my goal is to do something creative in some shape or form. 

Thursday, 5 January 2012

Doors of France

There is something beautiful about the doors we saw in France.  They are colorful, mysterious and intriguing.  
Who lives or once lived behind these doors? 
I found this photo from our travels to Paris in 2005 and had it printed into a 13" x 19" format and framed it today.  
Quelle beauté!

Wednesday, 4 January 2012

Each day do something creative

As if I haven't had enough desserts over the past few weeks, I decided to make crème brûlée.  
Why not?  
I have to admit it is a bit of a process, not difficult by any means, but it takes time.  Simmering the cream and sugar, using real vanilla (scraping the seeds from a vanilla pod), blending the cream with the egg yolks and than adding 'la pièce de résistance' -  GRAND MARNIER
Then adding the orange zest equals heaven.  
Here is a photo (taken by Robert) and the look of it is very visually interesting also - the back vanilla seeds with the orange peel mixed in the cream color and then the brownish caramelized sugar topping.  
Everyone enjoyed the dessert and I felt as though I did something creative today!

Sunday, 1 January 2012

My recent art sales

I am so thrilled to have sold 6 of my paintings at the annual show/benefit "Nouveau Louvre"

I am honored and thrilled about my work being shown in others homes.. I hope they enjoy it as much as I did creating it.

There are pictures of the paintings in my gallery ...

This is "Musical Soul"

Musical Soul by Julie Shephard