Haliburton County entrepreneur Danielle Martin wants to splash a little colour across the Highlands.

The owner of new business, Shape Shifter, Martin designs and illustrates products, including murals.

She’s originally from Newmarket, but her family has cottaged in the area for eight years. She graduated from the Haliburton School of Art and Design last May, completing the Visual and Creative Arts Diploma, Integrated Design Diploma, Photo Arts Certificate and Digital Image Design Certificate.

During the summers of her first two years at HSAD, she worked with her mom’s home staging and interior design company in Newmarket. In her third year, she worked as a freelance photographer for The Highlander, and last summer was the student for Rails End Gallery.

She believes all of that experience has led her to where she is today.


“The past couple of months, I have been really thinking about how to pursue my passions while giving value to the world in my own unique way,” Martin said in an interview.

She said her style is “very outer worldly with a fresh and funky twist.”

She said she’s been illustrating designs for four years and has always had visions of seeing them on a grander scale, which led her to thinking about doing murals.

“I truly believe that murals, in both indoor and outdoor spaces, are extremely effective in how one perceives the world. They have the ability to enhance any space by bringing natural curiosity, wonder, joy, and sparking the inner child within all of us,” she said.

She is targeting businesses for her murals, “because if you have an intriguing piece that is a ‘showstopper,’ the more likely people will want to come check it out, and spread the word. It can be a great way to advertise by showcasing your upgraded and exciting space, which in the long-term, will greatly impact your customers’ overall experience and enhance the energy in the atmosphere,” she said.

Martin said she would love to do storefronts and office spaces, outdoor, indoor or on windows. She said for businesses, it’s an ideal time, since many are closed due to the pandemic.

“They can start advertising their new artwork in the meantime, giving their customers something to look forward to when they open.”

She added that for her personally, COVID-19 has given her the time to create the online building blocks for her site.

“Currently, I am in the process of creating a colouring book, which will feature my own illustrations. I am selling apparel and products with my designs on them, as well as doing commissioned work for clients,” she said.

As for murals, she said she has an archive of illustrations and designs, or can collaborate with clients.

For mural inquires, or other commissioned work, contact Martin at: daniellenicolem@outlook.com

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