I had an incident….

slowdownJust this past week I had an incident.  A minor incident, but an incident none the less.  It started when I opened the back door of my van (the one I use for art exhibitions) to find that a lot of the contents had shifted.  Since it was a beautiful day, I decided that I was going to rearrange and organize the back of my van.  As my 7 year old son was shouting to me to come to play football with him, I then opened the van doors and told him to wait a few minutes while I work on my van. 

For those of you who are not familiar with my “traveling to art shows lifestyle,” a lot of elements are incorporated into setting up a display.  Large tent, heavy walls and weights.  Yes, weights.  My four weights are solid steel bars that are about 3 feet in length.  They weigh 60 lbs each.  As I opened the back of the van door, I saw that my weights had shifted down and were not in a very ideal place in my van.  As I began to move two of the weights, one slid about 3 feet out of the van and onto my right foot. 

As blood started coming out of the top of my shoe, I realized that I had done some damage.  After a trip to the ER I found that I luckily I did not break any bones.  I am currently icing, elevating and limping at best. 

So… what does this mean to me?  I took it as a sign from the Universe to SLOW DOWN.  Because I am now caring for my swollen and bruised foot, I am forced to slow down.  Just as I always speak about living in the moment… I am now at a point where I have to.  And, to be quite honest, I am okay with that. 

In normal day to day, (as we all are) rushing from one thing to the next.  Because I can’t walk well, I can only accomplish a few things during the day.  I am realizing, that if it doesn’t get done…then so be it.

How can you slow down?  Taking time to care for yourself?  Not taking for grated the simple pleasures…such as walking, jumping, running?

Don’t get me wrong, I am hoping that I will be back to normal within a short amount of time.  However, when that time comes, I really want to stay in my way of taking things literally one step at a time.

I am a self- taught artist

Julie Havel Abstract ArtistI do have a college degree, but did not study art.  I took a few art classes at the University of Arizona, but did not pursue a degree in Fine Art.  The reason?  My parents told me that I could never make a living as an artist.

Here I am today…15 years later as a full-time artist.  Just know that you can accomplish anything if you believe in yourself & your goals.

I did grow up painting, drawing and creating, and had an amazing elementary school art teacher.  When I went to high school I had a fabulous art teacher as well.  In college, I only took about 4 art classes before I decided to give up.  I waited another 10 years before I picked up a brush again.  Yes, I did grow up with amazing influences artistically, but I still do consider myself as a self-taught artist.

People often say to me that they can’t even draw a stick figure.  Honestly…. Who cares?  In my world of Abstract, you don’t need to know how to draw a stick figure.  Just let yourself go, and know that there is no “right or wrong” when it comes to creating art.  This is my philosophy, as Abstract art allows me to create just about anything that I choose.

Just remember to HAVE FUN…LET GO… AND CREATE!

“What inspires you?”

I am probably asked this question hundreds of times a year.  For me, this is one of the toughest questions to answer.  It is also one of the most challenging things to describe.abstract julie havel

I believe that inspiration comes from two places.  The first is from the physical, and what the eye can see.  Nature is definitely the biggest physical influence.  Sometimes it is the greens, orange and yellow tones from leaves on a tree or the vast openness of the light blue sky, or the tranquil deep ocean and all of the mysteries that it holds. When I look at our beautiful world, I am very deeply impacted by texture and patterns.   I suppose this is the reason that I am so attracted to two dimensional mixed media.  When I see an inspiring pattern in nature, I try to recreate that pattern and texture using mixed media.  This physical inspiration comes in what I describe as “flashes” to me.  These “flashes” are images that come to my mind along with what the inspiration was. It will happen, and within seconds it is gone.  Since it happens so quickly, it is sometimes difficult to recall.  I really have to sit to connect with it, and to write down what I have experienced at that moment & how I could transform this “flash” idea into a painting.  These moments don’t happen all too often, but when they do, I get butterflies in my stomach & get very excited to begin creating.  There is so much more to describe this, but I truly can’t put it in words.  Ask any artist, and I believe they would tell you the same.

The second type of inspiration comes from the world that we cannot see.  I have spoken before about my creative guides, and I believe that they flow through me when I paint.  I call this inspiration, because I am putting to canvas, what I have no words to explain.  I cannot describe why I put a certain color in a particular painting, in a particular place.  I am only guided to do so.  My guides work through me, and I am solely a conduit in this physical world in which they can work.  Having this unknown force flowing through me is incredibly inspiring. 

“Abstract” 36×36 Acrylic & Mixed Media  #JulieHavelArt #ContemporaryArt #Decor

Influences in childhood, shape who we are as adults.

As we grow and change it is our choice to accept these influences. At least this is what I believe.  Who influenced me as a child…in regards to Art?  Truthfully, it was a combination of individuals.

My first influence was grandmother.  She was always making ceramic figurines.  I even remember her kiln in her basement & loved to watch her create.  That creative gene was passed down to my mother who was also an amateur artist.  I remember when I was very young, she would sit at her easel & create beautiful landscape paintings, as I would sit on the floor next to her and paint as well. 

I also had two amazing art teachers all through grade school and high school.  It was such a beautiful thing to have supportive teachers that accepted a child’s imagination, opening up worlds of possibilities. 

Lastly, in grade school, I had a pal in crime.  She was a beautiful soul who was insanely creative.  We would sit and draw together, paint together & create something out of nothing.  We went to art camp in the summers, and were always known in school as being the “creative ones”.  She was my soul sister and artistic partner. She is no longer in this world, but I do feel that she is often with me when I am creating. She was a wonderful influence on me & I hope to live out this dream for both of us.

“Imagine” 36×36 Available for purchase. #JulieHavel #MixedMediaArt #AbstractArt #Art #CreateArt #ContemporaryArt

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