In the heart of Athens, Georgia, a vibrant art scene thrives, enriched by the talents and passions of local artists like Camille Hayes. Camille embodies the spirit of creativity and community that makes Athens unique. In a recent interview, she shared insights into her life, her art, and her deep connection to this place she calls home.

Artist Camille Hayes poses holding one of her paintings from her exhibition, "B Sides," at tiny ATH gallery in Athens, GA.The Heartbeat of Athens’ Art Scene

Ask Camille about what she loves most about Athens, and she'll tell you about the city's vibrant art scene.

"There’s always something to do to support Athens’ creative economy. While it has indeed changed a lot over the years, it’s still wonderfully vibrant with new artists coming into their own each day," said Camille. 

From galleries to public art and weekend markets, Athens buzzes with creative energy. Camille is at the forefront of this, running tiny ATH Gallery, a space that celebrates and supports local artists. 

An Artistic Vision Shaped by Music

Camille's artistry is a blend of vivid abstraction and sleek design. Her paintings, characterized by bold colors and abstract forms, often take inspiration from music and musical instruments. As a graphic designer for Kaptiv8 web design and branding, she leans towards minimalism, reveling in the process of creating icons and selecting the perfect type pairings. This duality in her work reflects a versatile talent deeply engaged with her subjects.

"I love getting lost in the process and still being able to surprise myself," she said.

An early passion for illustration and custom letterforms evolved into a unique style, particularly influenced by live music. Many of her paintings are created live during concerts, capturing the essence of the music in visual form.

tiny ATH Gallery: A Hub for Local Art

In 2019, Camille opened tiny ATH Gallery, a space dedicated to showcasing local artists. The gallery is known for its monthly opening and closing art parties, celebrating the monthly exhibitions and connecting the community. 

Current Exhibition: A New Chapter

This week, tiny ATH Gallery is hosting "B Sides," Camille's first solo exhibition in a decade. The exhibition promises a fresh look at her signature abstracted musical instruments, revealing new dimensions and palettes. It's a reflection of her growth as an artist and her ongoing dialogue with music and art. Stop by the gallery to check it out before it closes on February 22, 2024.

Athens Through the Eyes of an ArtistPackaging for a Condor Chocolate bar with Visit Athens, GA branding. Art by Camille Hayes.

For art supplies and classes, Camille recommends K.A. Artist Shop and Flat File Print Shop. The Lyndon House Arts Center and ATHICA are go-tos for exhibitions, while Buvez and Flicker Theatre and Bar offer great live music. Camille's ideal Saturday in Athens? A mix of freelance design work, disc golf at Sandy Creek Park, and live shows at 40 Watt or Flicker —a true embodiment of Athens' artistic lifestyle.

A Sweet Collaboration

Collaborating with Visit Athens, GA, and the beloved local chocolatier, Condor Chocolates, Camille was tasked with designing a custom chocolate bar wrapper that captures the essence of Athens in a delicious melding of art and local flavor. This project highlights how art can intersect with everyday life in meaningful ways. This project not only showcased Camille's versatile talent and deep love for Athens but also highlighted the city's ongoing commitment to supporting its creative economy.