Today we’d like to introduce you to BJ Lane.
Thanks for sharing your story with us BJ. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
Like many young girls in the late 60’s, I quickly learned that the world was changing. Women were not always destined to marry, stay home, and raise kids. Instead, they were choosing careers and venturing out into the world to find their mission in the workplace. Early on, I was trying to answer the question, “who do you want to be when you grow up?” Suddenly, one day I saw the answer to that question. It was the first day of school in second grade. We started out the morning with “Show-and-Tell”. The first student stood in front of the class and presented. She talked about having “private art lessons” and presented her painting—an image of a roadrunner on a piece of driftwood. She closed her short speech by asking for the sale. One dime and the painting was mine. At seven-years-old, I was an art collector. I knew then what I wanted to be when I grew up … An Artist. A whole new world opened and my artful journey began.
The second-in-line of 4 children, my parents were not artistically inclined, but with my constant prodding, they both helped me start on my life-long journey. With a little drafting experience, my father taught me how to draw a house. To help me draw the tree beside the house, my mother encouraged me to go outside and look at nature. I’ll be forever grateful to my parents. They both taught me to look at life differently.
In high school, I won my first art award and felt I was well on my way … until my father warned me that I had better learn to type because I “wouldn’t be rich or famous until I was dead.” My mother, (the optimist), encouraged me by helping me learn the poem, “It Couldn’t Be Done”, by Edgar Albert Guest. The first verse is still ingrained in my mind, and has helped me get through many challenges:
“Somebody said that it couldn’t be done
But he with a chuckle replied
That “maybe it couldn’t,” but he would be one
Who wouldn’t say so till he’d tried.
So he buckled right in with the trace of a grin
On his face. If he worried he hid it.
He started to sing as he tackled the thing
That couldn’t be done, and he did it!”
Grant money in hand and the first in my family to go to college, I signed up for a full load of art classes. My studies were focused on creative medium—from painting classes, printmaking and design, to technical illustration, sculptures and art history. Armed with art tools, a portfolio, and innocent gumption, I landed my first one-woman exhibition at the age of 19, and not long after, my first gallery in Arizona.
A year later, my parents divorced and I made the move to California with a sad heart and a hope and a dream of museums, galleries, and a world full of art lovers who would be flocking at my door. But instead of art supporting me, I found that I needed to make a living to support my art. Like many artists starting out, I supplemented my art income with “regular” type work. I went to a temp agency and typed and filed, (thankfully I’d taken that typing class in high school), and after learning a bit of electricity, I was hired by Pacific-Bell as a telephone technician—all the while creating my art, exhibiting pieces in public places, and teaching the occasional art lesson. Art was in my blood.
Has it been a smooth road?
Within life, there is always some struggle. I was told by a dear mentor that when I began a family I would have to choose between pursuing my Art Career and being a mother. When my third child (who has Autism) was born, self-doubt crept in, For many years, I became a closet artist, raising my three daughters, and working in a sacred room I called my studio. During those years, my work was not displayed in galleries, not submitted to juried shows, nor was it displayed in public. Instead, I became a stay-at-home mom, homeschooled my children, and played secretly with my art. I sculpted my children in clay, painted my refection, and portrayed my family on canvas. These were the years when my heart and my art became one. Eventually, my art found its way out in the world.
Even now, every day is a chance to re-emerge, to grow, to share—to live each moment to its fullest, and to see gratitude in what life brings. I now help others find their own sense of peace and gratitude through Art.
We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
“BjlaneArtGallery.com The Poetry of Art”, is an online gallery space where I offer commissioned works, gallery collections of both paintings and sculptures, and learning opportunities.
My latest exhibition of work, “Memoirs of the Heart,” is currently on display at the Vista Library in San Diego County (700 Eucalyptus Ave. Vista, CA), through March 28, with a closing reception on March 21, 2-4pm. “Memoirs” features portraits and poetry inspired by my life, and illustrating special moments that contributed to my personal growth.
What I am most proud of is my ability to fulfill a need for people who desire great Art in their lives, I help people look inside themselves and discover their own artful heart. Whether they are looking for specialized art for their home, office, or want to learn to make better art, I offer my experience and expertise.
Is our city a good place to do what you do?
I spent over 30 years in Los Angeles area, raising my family and connecting with the arts community prior to moving to my current residence in San Diego area. I was originally drawn to L.A because of its rich history, architecture, and art culture.
Today, Los Angeles is full of opportunities for both art lovers and artists. There are large and small art museums that are rich with exceptional artwork— LACMA, The J Paul Getty Museum, the Latino Museum in Pomona, and the Sasse Museum in Upland—just to name a few.
Every so often, I still head up to L.A to capture a few reference photos for future city paintings, or to check out the art scene. Los Angeles and the surrounding areas are full of opportunities to fill oneself with exceptional Art.
- Gallery Art – Artful Collections average pricing: $2000-$9000
- Collectors’ Notable Collections average pricing: $14,000+
- Connoisseurs’ Exquisite Collections average pricing:: $30,000 +
- Prints and Gifts $30-$500+
- Address: 855 South Main Avenue, Ste. K#346
Fallbrook, CA 92028
- Website: www.bjlaneartgallery.com
- Phone: 760-728-1506
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: instagram.com/bjartworks
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BjlaneArtGallery/