The one-word list:

  • crafter

  • creative

  • thoughtful

  • librarian

  • snacker

  • worrier

  • organizer

  • daughter

  • sister

  • friend

  • wife

Julie-Ann Bryson

Julie-Ann has been crafty since she could pick up a crayon, thanks to many creative women in her life. Whether helping her grandmother sort pasta alphabet letters, stuffing cotton into fabric Santa Claus legs for her mom, doing counted cross-stitch with one aunt or illustrating greeting cards with another, she has always enjoyed making things with her family.

She is also me, the person writing this. So she is going to stop writing in the third person now.

One of my earliest memories is coloring with my great aunt. I was four years old. She drew something, and I didn't like it, so I scribbled all over her paper. She looked me dead in the eye and did the same thing to my picture! That moment taught me three things: one, my aunt was awesome; two, you can't let kids get away with bullsh*t; and three, all art should be respected. Of course, I didn't learn any of these things immediately. That day I just burst into tears.

In elementary school, I learned how to do linoleum block printing, and picked it up again in college. For many years after that I designed and printed my own one-word greeting cards. In 2003, I decided to make it all official by giving myself a trade name, combining my love of lucky sevens with my love of swirls to create Seven Swirls Designs.

Recently I've started painting the canvasses that you see here.  Although I still love block printing (and may even have some cards available here soon), I like the idea that each canvas is completely unique. I start by drawing each word directly on the canvas, then after some tweaking, paint the words in white, then fill in color around each letter. I paint at least two layers for a smooth, rich color.

I think a lot can be expressed in a single word, and that is what I aim to do with my paintings. I hope you enjoy my colorful words!

In addition to my artsy life, I'm also a librarian. I live just outside of Boston with my adorable husband (his torso and tie feature prominently in the Paintings section), and our crazy Boston Terrier, Lord Dashwood.  We spend most of our free time shopping, eating pizza, reading, watching bad TV, and snuggling on the couch with Dash.