Jim LePage is an artist and graphic designer who found his way into the field in a rather non-traditional way. After working as a preschool teacher for several years, Jim found himself desperate for a change of career in 2003. Following his wife’s suggestion to go back to school, he enrolled in a graphic design program at a local college. “I was not that kid who was always drawing. Other than playing in a couple bands, I didn’t have much experience creating art,” Jim recalled. In fact, he had never even owned a computer.
For all intents and purposes, going to school for graphic design didn’t really make a whole lot of sense. “Fortunately, I was stupid enough to do it and it ended up being something I not only have some talent at, but also enjoy,” Jim told us.
In 2012, he began experimenting with abstract painting, an activity that eventually took Jim down an entirely new artistic path. “My background and training is in graphic design where projects are steered by the needs and goals of a client,” he explained. “With my personal abstract work, I get to explore, free from any rules or client needs. It’s been a great opportunity to do a lot of experimentation and discover my own aesthetic preferences.” Jim particularly enjoys those moments when a client comes to him, requesting a certain style that he developed through his personal abstract artwork.
A couple of Jim’s paintings were recently featured in the album artwork and promotional materials for Feist’s album, Pleasure. This included print ads and even billboards displayed in Chicago and Los Angeles. “I’m a huge fan of hers and have really been wanting to get more into the world of album art, so it was pretty amazing to see that all come together,” he said.
With any luck, perhaps Jim’s foray into the music world will one day land him his dream project of working on artwork for Radiohead.
One of Jim’s most recent releases on YouWorkForThem is a vibrant exploration of fluid movement. Flow is a spellbinding set of 100 high resolution abstract paintings inspired by his favorite part of creating a new painting: right after the paint is applied. “There’s a moment—before it dries, shifts or takes on the texture of the substrate—where it it appears very fluid and smooth,” Jim observed. “The paint is so hypnotic and beautiful at that point. I wanted to create a set of pieces that captured that moment.”
To create the paint textures, Jim spent a lot of time experimenting with paints, mediums, and techniques. After scanning them into the computer, he used both Lightroom and Photoshop to adjust them in a manner that captured the fluid and smooth appearance he was after.
When it was all said and done, Flow took about a month to complete, yet it was a longer process in comparison to other products Jim has released in the past. “It took a lot of patience and dedication to get through all the different steps involved,” he told us. He spent a lot of time figuring out the best ways to achieve a fresh, wet look with Flow, and he was gratified to see it work out exactly as he envisioned.
The images in this collection have very little to no paper texture, just velvety smooth, pure liquid goodness. To accommodate the diverse needs of designers, Flow offers five distinct variations: 20 in full color, 20 in black and white, 20 in a warm tint, 20 in a cool tint, and 20 in a subdued vintage tone.
Flow’s high resolution (3000×3750, 300dpi) will work well in both print and digital applications. It’s a beautiful addition to website designs, digital collages, apparel designs, text overlays, book cover art, posters, social media imagery, and of course, album artwork.
As of this writing, Jim LePage offers 52 products through his portfolio, a colorful and diverse array of artistry that is as beautiful as it is functional. A few especially notable products include Planetary, a set of 50 abstract 3-D shapes; Glitched, 50 “destroyed” paint textures with a technological edge; and Golden Paint, a set of vivid gold paint textures on transparent backgrounds. He just released Flow Vol. 2 and is currently working on the third volume of the series.
Jim encourages everyone to take part in their own projects as often as they can. “I cannot recommend personal projects highly enough. Everything about where I am in my art and design career today traces back to a personal art or design project of some kind,” he said. “Make the time for it. You will not regret it.”
That’s wise advice all creative people should take to heart.