This month we’re featuring a very talented artist we found on Instagram - Julia Parobek Gingerich! Her unique style sparks the imagination in a fun and playful way. Check out her website and follow her social media accounts for more of her work!
From Julia: "Hello! I’m Julia. I live in Nashville, TN with my husband, two stepdaughters, and an ewok named Leia. (Ok, she’s not really an ewok, but she sure did look like it when we first got her. Now she looks like a mix between an ewok and a Wookie, so the name Leia still fits! I really hope there are some fellow Star Wars nerds reading this…). Though I’ve been a creative person all my life, I’m fairly new to the art scene. I started painting a little less than 3 years ago and have discovered what it feels like to finally be doing what I’m supposed to be doing! The watercolor brush feels like an extension of my hand. What an amazing feeling! I discovered watercolor brushes by Royal & Langnickel about a year and a half ago and was amazed at how detailed I could get with the smaller brushes compared to some other brands that I used in the same sizes. The quality of the brushes are hard to beat as well. They last awhile especially if you take good care of them!"
A: I started painting in January 2017. The summer before that, I went to a beginner’s class for modern calligraphy and had so much fun with it that I found and signed up for the Modern Calligraphy Summit (an online master class) and was introduced to watercolors from one of the instructors. That led me to purchase my first set of paints, brushes & paper. I quickly learned the importance of quality in the tools I used!! Since then I’ve signed up for the Watercolor Summit and a few Make Art That Sells classes. The instruction that I’ve received from all classes have been invaluable.
A: I have my favorite famous artists that I enjoy looking at when I go to art museums, but as far as finding inspiration for my own work, I find more inspiration from contemporary artists like Jenna Rainey, Peggy Dean, and Rachel Ryle who have been instrumental in developing this artistic day and age that we are in. Because of their desire and determination to turn their creative passions into extremely successful careers, they have become hopeful examples to all of us who want so badly to make money by doing what we love to do.
A: Realistic Imagination. I find inspiration in facial expressions of animals. I want to capture them in a way that tells a story. I want people to look at my art and think, “Wow! That’s realistic, but what in the world is he/she thinking? What is his/her personality like?” I want there to be a level of encouraging imagination when someone looks at my art. I also want my art to transcend ages. I recently had my Botanical Zoo series at a gallery and was there one afternoon watching young children, teens, college-aged, moms, dads, & grandparents smiling, laughing and enjoying each piece. It was such a touching scene that I will carry in my memory forever.
A: I want so badly to write and illustrate my own children’s book series!! I need to take a moment to brag about a project that I completed for our wedding this year. I designed and illustrated custom playing cards for our wedding guest favors! It was such an amazingly fun project! I actually used it as my wedding gift to my husband as well because he had no idea what I was doing.
A: Watercolors with hints of Gouache. It’s a challenge that intrigues me: How to control a medium that truly shouldn’t be controllable? I like how you can take one color and change the intensity of it just by adding water. It’s fun to watch the watercolors do what they want to do within the parameters that I put it in.
A: Just like any other artist, I need to be inspired. An idea pops in my head (usually involving an animal, florals or food) and I research the subject(s) until my creative juices start flowing. I save inspiration pictures, quotes, colors, etc and usually create some sort of mood board. Then I sketch ideas on my iPad, come up with a plan, decide on the size of the painting, draw out the final sketch on the paper, and then let the paint do it’s magic.
A: I currently have a side business because I couldn’t just stop at painting. I use my paintings to create product that can easily be sold at art fairs and on Etsy.
A: This lovely year of 2019 has been a huge transition year for me. I got engaged, married, became a step-mom, got a promotion at work, became the point person for a company-wide system rollout, bought and moved into a house all in the span of 6-7 months. My major roadblock this year has been time. I sadly have not had any time to devote to my art and my little side business for the majority of this year. I have had to turn that sadness, frustration & overwhelming desire to paint into a determination to make 2020 into my year of creativity. I feel that this time of daydreaming and taking notes of projects I want to work on will jump start me in the new year. I’m very excited to finally get my studio set up in my new home!
A: I know… you asked for one piece of advice, but I can’t pick between the two that I have, so you get a bonus answer!
First bit of advice: Keep some sort of journal. You may not realize this when you are in the midst of a creative incline, but you will go through a lull and find it hard to come up with ideas. If you keep a journal (tip: the bullet journal format is great for quickly jotting down and/or sketching ideas) you will have a reference to look at when you find yourself stumped for your next project.
Second bit of advice: don’t rush your creative process. If you have a great idea, but can’t seem to execute it, back-burner it and come back to it later. It’s ok to do that!! I promise!! I have several pieces that I have started that just weren’t panning out the way that I wanted them to, so I took a breather from them. I’ve returned to a couple of them and they have become some of my favorites!
A: Before my first art gallery show, I was struggling with how to price my items since I’m such a new painter. My artist mentor asked me a question to help me make my decisions, “Do you want to quickly sell your art or do you want to be collected?” Find yourself a mentor who will give you advice in the form of questions in order to challenge you!!
A: The Zen series is currently my favorite. I mentioned in my initial introduction paragraph that I love how detailed I can get with the smaller brushes, but the larger sized brushes are amazing to work with as well!
Royal & Langnickel - Art & Craft