Friday, May 6, 2011

The Grampians


I recently came back from a climbing trip to The Grampians, a world class climbing area in Australia.

Climbing in new areas in nature is truly what inspires my art.

Read about my Grampians trip HERE and stay tuned for new creations inspired by this place!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Another big drawing

Where I have been lately?! In the art studio, of course... I have basically been living at uni, producing art every day - until the sun rises, sometimes! Here is my newest work. Inspired by climbing. Read more below:

This is the text i was responding to:

"Despite its apparent precision, perspective is a generalization about experience. It schematizes but does not really represent the way that we see. Look at an object: your eye is never still. It flicker
s, involuntarily restless, from side to side. Nor is your head still in relation to the object; every moment brings a fractional shift in its position, which results in a minuscule difference of aspect. The more you move, the bigger the shifts and differences become. If asked to, the brain can isolate a given view, frozen in time; but its experience of the world outside the eye is more like a mosaic than a perspective set up, a mosaic of multiple relationships, none of them (as far as vision is concerned) wholly fixed. Any sight is a sum of different glimpses. And so reality includes the painter's efforts to perceive it. Both the viewer and the view are part of the same field. Reality, in short, is interaction.”-Robert Hughes

Artist Statement:

After reading the quote from Robert Hughes's book "The Shock of the New", my thoughts automatically turned to my great passion: rock climbing. The text deals with perspective, interaction, and motion, which all directly relate to climbing. The climber's perspective is a unique aspect of the sport. Climbing is a portal into a completely different world - the vertical world, and it is a perspective that very few people will ever experience.

When scaling up a wall, it is as if all of the conflicts in my life temporarily disappear and the only thing that matters is a single movement of my body to hold on to a piece of rock. Climbing requires intense focus and perpetuating concentration; an endless trance. Every movement is inevitably turned into a tunnel-vision goal, which is achieved immediately almost every time, over and over again.

This series of work is an attempt to bring the viewer into the life of a climber. Each piece represents an individual section of rock, which requires specific movements to unlock the sequence and dance up the wall. Climbing requires one to focus only on single movements, as taking too much in can be overwhelming.

Leave a comment
and let me know what you think!

What have YOU been up to lately?!

Monday, April 11, 2011


The other day I went to Uni with a to-do list. I ended up doing NOTHING on my to-do list, and instead, creating a drawing that took over 14 hours!!! I finally finished at 3am. Here are a few pictures of the process:

I start with a simple line drawing
...and then I shade everything in with charcoal!
over half way done!


This piece is a response to the topic we were given in my printmaking class:

I chose the clock as my object because I am fascinated by the idea of time. It has been said that time is Einstein's unfinished revolution, and there are so many questions to be answered: Who created time? What is time? Why does time slow in gravity and motion? Is time a dimension? Can we stop time? And, of course, Does time even exist?

There is so much unknown information about time. In my eyes, time is a mysterious dimension... a parallel universe. After doing exhaustive scientific research, and questioning the existence of time, I decided to take a step back and relate this topic back to nature. It was then that I realized that nature defines time through growth. Spirals, tree rings, and rock layers are nature’s clocks.

What do you think!?

annnnnd.... you can now purchase prints of this piece in various sizes, along with greeting cards HERE, or by clicking the picture below:

Photography Prints

Thursday, February 17, 2011


Traveling inspires me. I have never felt happier in my life than when I am experiencing new areas. In some way, traveling reminds me who I really am as a person and my purpose in life.

photo: Elodie Saracco

New areas seem to provide me with new inspirations. These inspirations directly influence my two main passions: art and climbing. I seem to connect all of my experiences back to these two passions. They are really my driving force in life. Traveling is what fuels the fire.

I just returned from traveling in Thailand for 6 weeks. It was absolutely incredible. You can read about my experiences here. (more coming soon!)

So what inspired me in Thailand?

-The friendly Thai people, always smiling and having a good time.

-The twisted roots of the trees, mingling into some sort of network…

-The natural art that appeared on the trunks of the trees.

-The big natural root system that formed into a lifesize spider-shape.

-The bizarre tropical fruit.

-Strong climbers.


-Coral that i found.

…and of course, being reunited with the love of my life after being apart for 7 months:

I connected these inspirations back to all aspects of my life. Art. Climbing. Success. Happiness. My dreams. My ambitions.

Traveling re-inspires me to follow my dreams and achieve my goals.

One of my dreams is to write a book. Well, with the help of traveling, I am currently making a series of inspirational books that connect my two passions: art and climbing. I just finished the first one, which is mainly inspired by climbing. It is basically a very simple, zen book that includes high quality climbing photos paired with profound quotes. The quotes not only address climbing as a get-away, but they also discuss mental states with which everyone struggles including frustration and intimidation... and overcoming it.

I am finishing the final business factors that go along with book publishing, and I will announce the opening of the book sale soon. STAY TUNED! And meanwhile, go do what you love. =)

Saturday, December 25, 2010


Today I spent 8.5 hours in a coach/bus on the way back to Christchurch.

I spent most of the day admiring the scenery and catching up on sleep on the bus. We stopped through Lake Tekapo and I admired the view one last time.

Since not much happened today, I’ll speak a bit about traveling as a raw vegan.

Most of you know that I am a raw vegan- that is, I don’t eat any animal products or cooked food. I mainly eat fruit and some greens and some nuts. I have eaten this way for over 2.5 years and I have never felt better. It feels so natural and I feel connected to the Earth when I eat this way. Anyways, you can imagine that it may be a little tricky traveling and finding enough fruit to eat… because let me tell you, I eat a LOT of fruit!

Firstly, I believe that if you want something bad enough, you will always find a way to do it. There is fruit everywhere. I typically seek out what is in season in the area and base my diet from that food, since in-season fruit is always the freshest and most delicious. In New Zealand, my fruit of choice was golden kiwis (as mentioned in a couple earlier posts. I literally ate over 30 a day. My second food of choice was cherries, which were growing locally in Queenstown:

At first I was a bit worried about finding enough fruit to eat since I was traveling alone and didn’t know where anything was. Upon arrival, I found that finding fruit shops was easy. I bought fruit and my mind was at ease. When I traveled to Queenstown I passed this on the way and knew I’d be okay:

I love the way the fruit diet makes me feel and nothing can stop me from finding enough fruit to stay energetic and happy. Not even traveling. In fact, the variety of different fruits that are introduced to my diet through traveling is actually quite exciting. =)

Friday, December 17, 2010


Where to begin?! Today I experienced one of the most beautiful places in the world: Milford Sound.

I woke up early and was picked up by a luxury coach bus with big comfy seats and a glass roof for prime views. After picking up everyone else from his or her accommodation, we were on our way.

The drive was beautiful. I was on an “eco tours” bus so the driver spent much of the ride pointing out interesting facts about the environment we were driving in, including the plans and animals. It was all very interesting and I learned a lot of information about the ecology of this area.

To be completely honest, half the time he was talking, I was too distracted by the boulders to listen. My head was glued to the window, admiring the constant flow of rocks we were passing… I spent most of the ride daydreaming about the endless climbing potential of the place. My obsession with climbing has returned in full force. I can’t stop thinking about it and relating everything to it. It’s one of the most important parts of my life.

We stopped in many places along the way to take short walks or simply snap a photo. Here are some of the stops we made:

the tops of the mountains in the background were used in lord of the rings.

i love seeing spirals in nature.... spirals are a re-occuring motif in my art
This is so inspiring to me, i can hardly handle it. Nature is amazing.
a rainbow forming in the chasm, amazing.
getting closer! amazing view.
filling up our water bottles in the monkey river fed by glaciers
on the road again:
waterfalls... everywhere

the shapes of these inspire my art:
going through the tunnel:
i love these flowers.

After quite a long drive, we arrived in Milford Sound. We took an hour and 15 minute cruise through the sound and it was absolutely breathtaking! Again, I was distracted by the beautiful rock surrounding the sea, and couldn’t help but daydream about climbing everything around me.

There were a few times that I had to remind myself that what I was seeing was real and not just a desktop background. The scenery was simply amazing.

We saw many cool natural attractions including Bowen Falls, Sinbad Gully, Mitre Peak (one of the tallest mountains in the world to rise directly from the sea floor), Copper Point, Fairy Falls, Bridal Veil Falls. Dale Point, Seal Rock, Stirling Falls, Mt. Kimberly, Harrison’s Cove, Mt. Pembroke, and Cascade Range.

Stirling Falls was one that especially stood out. It was absolutely gorgeous. It is the 2nd largest permanent waterfall in the fiord and is fed by the glaciers in the mountains behind. A rainbow formed from the mist as we got closer, and it almost turned into a DOUBLE rainbow! Full on!

almost a DOUBLE rainbow!

It was a BEAUTIFUL day and I am so glad that I got to experience Milford Sound on this trip… it’s definitely a MUST-SEE!!!!!

Everyone on the tour was given a sack lunch. I had briefly mentioned on the phone that I was a vegan, but I didn't really explain my diet or anything and I didn't expect them to cater to me... however, when i told them my name, they handed me a special lunch with the words "Hamilton, vegan" written on it. Salad, apple, and a banana. Awesome. Kiwi people are so nice! I also ate 10 kiwis on the cruise. =D

Travel note:

Even though most tour buses / coaches are super touristy and overpriced, I believe a Milford Sound trip is an exception. It was decently priced for a FULL day trip (I left at 8am and returned at 9:30pm) Firstly, the tour was extremely informative and I wouldn’t have learned that information without being on a tour bus. Also, the driver knew of all the most picture-perfect spots to stop and admire the view on the way. On top of that, making a return trip from Queenstown to Milford Sound is quite a long way (a FULL DAY) so it was convenient to just hop on a bus and have someone do it for me. The other options would be driving there yourself or hitching. Driving yourself would be okay, but unless you do your research, you probably won’t learn as much as you would on a tour. Also, to actually see Milford Sound, you must take a cruise – which is easily booked together with a coach... but could be booked individually as well. As far as hitchhiking goes, it would take at least a couple days to hitch there and back from Queenstown, as it is seriously a full day trip. I would have done this if I had a few more days, but since I was short on time, the coach was the best option – and I’m glad I did it.