Thursday, March 28, 2013

JMD Loves... Zoe Pawlak, Artist Extraordinaire!

Our good friends over at Angela Robinson Interior Design have been gushing to us about Zoe Pawlak for a while now. They commissioned her to create this gorgeous custom piece of art for a residence in the Kitsilano neighbourhood of Vancouver, BC. We love how this piece provides the space with all the colour it needs! The scale of it is fantastic too; it would have been easy to request a piece that was smaller that fit right above the headboard. That's why we love Angela's work - unexpected, original and perfectly executed!

Photo courtesy of Angela Robinson Interior Design

Zoe Pawlak does not stop at being simply a much sought-after artist. She is also a curator, speaker, and consultant. Her work has begun to make appearances in The Cross - which is one of our favourite stores to visit while in Vancouver.

There's lots to love about Zoe's work. We were first drawn in by her expressive use of colour! Her paintings have a certain softness to them, but can also have strong blues, fuchsias, and yellows.

Heaven Hold On II
Oil on Panel
28 x 84

There is a range in style to her work, too; landscapes, abstracts, figuratives, and florals. She is an artist with great range. She does many commissions, so anything is possible, really.

You Were Always There
Oil on Canvas
48 x 48

Rest Upon These Bones
17" x 24"
Mixed media on mylar

Beyond the art and million other things that Zoe does with her time (sleep? probably not), she is the co-owner of Loaded Bow, which is a networking group for female entrepreneurs from any industry. They host private events and gatherings, and help to grow and support women in business, which is invaluable. If we lived in Vancouver, we'd be at every event.

Pursuit of You
Oil on Canvas
16 x 20

A Field of This
Oil on Canvas
36 x 48

In summary, Zoe is our new art obsession! We were lucky enough to meet her in Vancouver a couple of weekends ago, and she is as warm and inviting as her work! If you are looking for that perfect piece of art to finish off your space, we found your artist! Go find her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to get a glimpse into pieces she is currently working on.

Last, but certainly not least, our favourite Zoe Pawlak piece.... 

Show Me with Your Eyes
Oil on Canvas
36 x 48

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Dope Taupes!

Dope Taupes 

(with special appearances by beige, cream, gray and more!)

We're huge fans of all shades of neutrals here at Jenny Martin Design. There's no better way to build a scheme for a room than starting with a timeless colour and use pops of your current favourite colours to inject your personality into the space! The days of brown as the 'top dog' neutral are out, and taupe has succeeded as the new go to colour. We can hear you already, "Excuse me, what exactly is a taupe? Is it one of those 'designer' colours that don't actually exist?". We're happy to report that this is no malachite or eburnean. To us, taupe is a beautiful colour that falls anywhere between brown and gray; think of it as a 'warm gray'. Where most grays are often described as cold feeling, taupes lean more on the warmer side. It should be pointed out though; we love all grays in our office, warm or cold!

We use different brands of paint here at the office, and thought we'd share our favourites here with you!

Let's start with the grand daddy of paint companies - Benjamin Moore. We're great friends with Benny, and are often in the company of at least one of his paint decks. Let's have a look at the top picks!

Florentine Plaster CC-520

 Source: http://www.benjaminmoore.ca/en-ca/paint-color/florentineplaster

Hello Gorgeous! This is a stunning taupe that falls more towards the beige spectrum, with just enough gray to keep it current and modern!

Here's a beautiful bathroom painted with Florentine Plaster:
Source: http://www.houzz.com/photos/317739/Private-Residence---Ensuite-Design-traditional-bathroom-vancouver

Revere Pewter HC-172


With just a touch more gray than Florentine Plaster, this taupe is commonly used in more modern homes. Don't let that deter you if you're a lover of traditional style - taupes are the most versatile neutrals out there!

A modern bathroom kept simple with Revere Pewter letting the wood tones of the vanity pop. Anyone ready for a bath?
Source: Designed by Rasmussen / Su Architects

Pale Oak OC-20

Source: http://www.benjaminmoore.com/en-ca/paint-color/paleoak

This is a light whisper of a taupe, and is also one of the fabulous Canadian designer, Candice Olsen's favourite neutrals. If you don't get a lot of natural light in a space, a light tone like this would be perfect to use!
A serene bedroom scene with our friend Pale Oak. We love how beautiful it looks with that gorgeous flooring!
Source: http://www.houzz.com/pro/risaboyer/risa-boyer-architecture

Natural Cream OC-14

 Source: http://www.benjaminmoore.ca/en-ca/paint-color/naturalcream

This taupe is a bit darker than Pale Oak, but still maintains a light feel. This putty-like colour is found in Benjamin Moore's off-white collection and is so exquisitely neutral it will work anywhere. We mean that. Anywhere.
Source: http://underthetuliptree.typepad.com/under-the-tulip-tree/2010/12/dining-room-redo.html

Our other top paint company is Sherwin-Williams. We find Sherwin-Williams really has the best selection of taupes and grays (sorry, Benny); although their paint names leave a bit to be desired. No one's looking at the paint name once the paint is on the wall, anyway.

Shoji White SW 7042

 Source: http://www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/

This taupe is quite light, an off white taupe if you will. We have actually used this as a paint colour for kitchen cabinets, and the result was impressive.

Source: http://www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/

Useful Gray SW 7050

 Source: http://www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/

Here's a gorgeous medium taupe that is exactly what its name implies- useful. Use it everywhere! It's saturated enough that it shows on the wall, but doesn't feel like a 'dark' colour.

 Source: http://www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/

Mega Greige SW 7031

  Source: http://www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/

We'll finish things off with a couple of darker taupes for you adventurous souls out there. The first is Mega Greige and we love it. It's not actually as dark and scary as it might seem on a chip. Put it against some white cabinets and trim and look at it pop!

Source: http://www.houzz.com/ideabooks/454963/list/Choosing-Paint--How-To-Pick-the-Right-Gray

Adaptive Shade SW 7053

   Source: http://www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/
This dark taupe is a beautiful balance between brown and grey. It's much warmer than a standard dark gray, and much more exciting than plain old brown! You could use it on walls anywhere, but also consider this taupe for cabinets. Just look at this kitchen below - the cabinets are painted relatively dark, but with the lighter counter tops and wall colour it feels perfectly balanced!
Source: http://soledadbuilders.com/

We hope you enjoyed this journey through the surprisingly diverse land of taupes. Hopefully we've inspired you to give one of these shades a try. Our best piece of advice when considering paint for any room is to buy a test pot and paint squares on a couple of walls in the room. Then look at the colour in the morning, midday, and the evening. Watch how it changes and that way you'll know for sure if it's the right colour for your space!