Today we’d like to introduce you to Jennifer Turnbull.
Every artist has a unique story. Can you briefly walk us through yours?
I have been drawing and doodling since I can remember. My mother was always buying me crayons and blank sketchbooks to draw in. I recall when I was in the third grade my teacher had a talk with her about me one day. She told my mother that there were doodles all over my English assignment. My mother asked her if I had completed the assignment and my teacher said that I had. My mother then asked her if there was a problem. My teacher dropped the issue. I knew at that moment that my mother had my back. From that time on I recognized how supportive both she and my father had been.
I kept making art and was especially inspired by the stained-glass windows in the Catholic church we would attend. My mother bought me paint, colored pencils and all different kinds of crafts. My father, a woodworker by hobby, taught me basic woodworking skills and I learned how to make art out of wood too.
With my parents’ support I found the confidence to pursue art as a career, not just a hobby. In 2003 I earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Drawing and Painting from California State University, Fullerton. Over the years I have exhibited my art in Los Angeles County, Orange County and Ventura County and it has been published in magazines and on album covers.
I began teaching art at a public high school in 2006 and then went on to earn a Master of Arts degree in Education from the University of La Verne in 2008. As a teacher, I am compassionate and dedicated to my students and what they are learning. When my former students think of me I hope they remember a teacher who was positive and nurturing and one who would not have minded finding any extra doodles on their assignments.
Please tell us about your art.
My goal is to make the kind of art that touches our souls and renews our spirits. The majority of my creations are brightly colored because I want my work to appear to be full of light and energy that flows and leads the viewer into and around each piece. I make connections between the natural and spiritual worlds as my creative way of honoring life as sacred, precious and beautiful. It is my hope that my art will inspire others to reflect on the deeper, symbolic meanings in their own lives and that it can help them come away with a sense that there is something sacred in this world.
As an artist, how do you define success and what quality or characteristic do you feel is essential to success as an artist?
Well, it’s tough because you’ve got to eat and pay the bills; you’ve got to survive. We have to make sacrifices for where we want to go in life, but it’s also important to be practical. I think it’s ideal for artists to have a second job initially, preferably one that is art-adjacent, so it doesn’t drain them too much creatively and they can remain inspired to work on their art projects when they get home. This is one of the reasons I decided to become a high school art teacher. I can work with creative people all day and then still have time to work in my studio at night.
How or where can people see your work? How can people support your work?
People can see my work online at www.JenniferTurnbull.com and on my social media accounts, @TurnbullsArt. One of my paintings, Receiving the Sacrament, is currently on display at the Geo Gallery on 1545 Victory Blvd in Glendale. The show is running from April 25th through May 11th. In 2015 the City of Burbank commissioned me to paint a mural on an electrical box. It’s titled, Good Morning, Burbank, and can be seen at the corner of Olive Ave. and Verdugo Ave. in Burbank, Ca.
My work is frequently exhibited in local galleries in LA County. If people follow me on social media they will be able to get updates about upcoming shows. People can support me by coming out to the exhibits and by purchasing my art and prints which are for sale on my website and Facebook page, www.facebook.com/TurnbullsArt.
- Website: www.JenniferTurnbull.com
- Instagram: TurnbullsArt
- Facebook: TurnbullsArt
- Twitter: TurnbullsArt
All images credited to Jennifer Turnbull.