Artist’s works show results of wandering, wondering

Sometimes he uses a camera. Other times he uses a paintbrush. Hamill blends photos and illustrations, coining a term called “photilation.”

A collection of about 25 pieces, “Wander, Wonder … A 40 Year Retrospect,” will be on display through April 19 at the Meeting Haus, 588 S. Third St.

“I guess that’s what I’m doing, wandering around wondering,” he said.

Hamill, 65, grew up in Bexley and studied art at Ohio State University. His career largely has focused on a contract commercial art for institutions such as MedFlight, Battelle and Kenyon College.

“I’ve never had a job,” he jokes.

But in between his contract work, he has experimented with different colors, shapes and techniques to create several series of artwork.

His exhibit will feature work done in a variety of media.

Hamill, a Reynoldsburg resident, has been renting his Deshler Avenue art studio (once his apartment) for more than 40 years, often using Schiller Park across the street as creative inspiration.

All three floors, which include a foyer and attic, are filled with hundreds of thousands of pieces, some strewn across the floor, hanging on the walls, captured on celluloid in rows of cabinets and others digitally preserved.

Yes, he catalogs his work and can find specific pieces with a keystroke of his computer.

Hamill was praised for supplying many pictures and paintings to “Schiller Park Across Time: Celebrating 150 Years,” a book released last year to commemorate the sesquicentennial of the community’s most iconic greenspace.

He refutes any notion of himself being a stereotypical artist: isolated, misunderstood and broody.

“I’m curious,” said Hamill, who’s been to Japan, Europe, Thailand, China and Sri Lanka.

“I keep doing artwork.

 “I just feel like painting and visually exploring.”

Katharine Moore, chairwoman of Friends of Schiller Park, said Hamill has long donated his skills to the village, both in compling artwork for “Schiller Park Across Time” and taking pictures at many community events.

He also dedicates a portion of sales of his calendars each year to the German Village Society.

“Without question he is one of the leading commercial photographers in central Ohio and beyond, but it’s that skill coupled with his profound sense of generosity that makes him special to us,” Moore said.