• Featured Artists
May 18, 2023

Springtime Artist Features

We love sharing the work and stories of inspiring artists. Read about Brittany, Carola, Julia, and Linda in this blog post!

By The Art Toolkit Team

A watercolor painting with a tennis court in the foreground and cityscape in the background.

Brittany Greene

An artist sits atop a wooden table, smiling, with framed artwork in the background.
Brittany poses with her art behind her | Brittany Greene

Brittany Greene is an athlete and artist based in metropolitan Washington, DC. Watercolor is her medium of choice, and she uses it to capture the inspiration she gets from her surroundings and her childhood. Her paintings depict vibrant places and dynamic portraits that invite the viewer into her world.

Brittany always begins with a light sketch with a 4H pencil before going in with layers and layers of watercolor (usually, Daniel Smith paints). “My grandmother, who I’m named after, used to paint with them, so in a way, painting with them makes me closer to her and also like I’m continuing her legacy,” Brittany says.

A watercolor painting with a tennis court in the foreground and cityscape in the background.
S Capitol St SW & 1st St SW by Brittany Greene
Bookstore sketch by Brittany Greene
An open palette lays on a cutting mat with thumbnail watercolor sketches.
Brittany’s Explore Palette and watercolor sketches
A watercolor painting of two young Black girls, dressed in matching dresses, in a colorful garden.
Children in the garden by Brittany Greene
Two watercolor paintings, one of a tropical scene and one of women lined up in face masks and towels on their heads, next to a paintbrushes and a mixing palette.
Brittany painting
A portrait of two black women, one with short curly hair and a puffy-sleeved top, and one with long hair and a blazer.
Portraits by Brittany Greene

“I’m so grateful for art. It’s helped me express myself, connect with incredible people, and, most importantly, it has helped me embrace myself and my perspective. There’s something really special about realizing no one sees the world like you do––that’s a gift.”

Thank you for sharing your beautiful work with us, Brittany! To see more of Brittany’s art, give her a follow on Instagram or check out her website. Photos courtesy of Brittany.

Carola Sallis

An artist with a long, black ponytail fans out several sketchbooks.
Carola Sallis | Carola Sallis

Carola Sallis is a self-taught artist based in Vancouver, Canada. In 2018, she started sketching flowers and continues to do so today. Her floral works have turned into her relaxation routine. By incorporating a unique style of abstract watercolor painting and freehand floral drawing, Carola focuses less on the piece’s outcome and more on putting her hand to paper and going with the flow.

“Art has brought me self-confidence as an artist and a community of like-minded people to engage with. With practice, I have found my own style and have learned that you don’t have to do art the same way as someone else in order to be part of an art community,” Carola reflects.

Carola fills her Art Toolkit with Daniel Smith and Windsor & Newton watercolor paints, various fountain pen inks, fine liners, and glass dip pens. She also enjoys using fountain pen-friendly notebooks such as the paper found in Hobonichi notebooks (Tomoe River Paper), since they can withstand some watercolor use.

Her current Pocket Palette includes paints from Daniel Smith (Hansa Yellow Light, Pyrrol Scarlet, New Gamboge, Phthalo Blue, Quinacridone Rose, and French Ultramarine), Windsor & Newton (Sap Green and Mauve), and Grumbacher Academy (Payne’s Gray and Chinese White).

A sketchbook open to a ink and watercolor sketch of colorful flower buds, surrounded by leaves.
Loose, floral sketches by Carola Sallis
A close-up of vibrant watercolor flowers with loose, inked outlines.
Loose, floral sketches by Carola Sallis
Orange and mauve flowers with green foliage and loose, ink outlines fill a sketchbook page.
Loose, floral sketches by Carola Sallis
An open Pocket Palette filled with bright paints and mixes.
Sketched flowers and a Pocket Palette

Thank you so much Carola for sharing your work and wisdom with us! You can keep up with Carola on her website and on Instagram. Photos courtesy of Carola.

Julia Kuo

An artist sits on a step holding a dog on a leash and a sketchbook.
Julia sketches with her dog | Julia Kuo

Julia Kuo is an incredible picture book illustrator and author. For a long time, Julia would carry a paint tin, black pen, and sketchbook on vacations and outdoor adventures. However, using analog materials became a luxury as her spare time shrank. She has been working digitally for a while now, using her Cintiq tablet and Photoshop, which allow for efficient revisions and make meeting deadlines more doable.

“As my work has gotten busier, it’s become harder to find time to draw for fun—I suppose that’s one of the drawbacks of making your hobby your profession. However, I’ve leaned into all the ways I can still enjoy art in my downtime without drawing—like reading a graphic novel, working on a beautifully illustrated puzzle, or admiring the beauty of the mountains all around me here in Seattle!”

A sketch of many dogs running around, swimming, and playing.
Dog party by Julia Kuo
A hand holds out a painting of a mountain outside in front of a mountain.
Alaska sketch by Julia Kuo
A hand holds a page of sketches of animals in front of an exhibit of a giant animal skeleton.
Field museum sketch by Julia Kuo
A hand holds a line drawing sketch of a lobby overlooking a snowy mountain scene, held in front of a snow-covered patio.
Banff, Alberta by Julia Kuo

Thank you for sharing your work and how you engage with art, Julia! To see more of her work, follow her on Instagram and check out her website. Photos courtesy of Julia.

Linda Marcille

A woman with curly brown hair and vibrant clothes smiles at the camera, holding a spiral notebook titled Magic Journal #ArtHeals on the cover.
Linda Marcille | Linda Marcille

Linda Marcille worked as a full-time gallery-represented artist, creating landscape paintings with French dyes on silk, until a disabling illness forced her to close her studio and made her homebound. Since then, one thing that has kept her going is her daily creative practice. Linda created an “Art Nest” by surrounding her recliner with art tools to remind her to be creative during painful times when she can’t get to her home studio.

Having a daily creative practice has been restorative and healing for her; she finds she’s much less aware of pain and fatigue while making art. Linda wanted to share this discovery with others impacted by chronic illness, pain, grief, and isolation, so she created a YouTube channel called “Beginner’s Mind - Art Mind.” There, she shares with her viewers the healing power of having a daily creative practice.

A painting of a farmhouse with bales of hay and distant, purple mountains.
Farmhouse by Linda Marcille
A painting of a book corner with potted flowers, a portrait of a girl, and a black rocking chair.
Rocking chair by Linda Marcille
A tray of sketching supplies (sketchbook open to a painting of a bouquet of yellow flowers) on a person’s lap and a small dog on a couch in the background.
Linda’s sketching set-up at home
A painting of a neighborhood road, from the perspective of a driver, with a red car in front of them on the road with trees and telephone lines along the road.
Neighborhood drive by Linda Marcille
An artist sites on a rock, dipping a paintbrush in a Pocket Palette.

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