Today we’d like to introduce you to Juliet Sikora.
Juliet, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
Everyone asks me when I started drawing and painting. I always say since I was born! My mother’s side of the family are all artists. Growing up, I didn’t realize it was unusual for family members to make all their own greeting cards or art on their walls. I continued drawing through high school. When I got to college, I double majored in fine art and advertising/public relations at Penn State. I also studied studio art, art history, and conservation of archeological objects at SACI College of Art and Design in Florence, Italy. There I was submerged into the past, present, and future of the art world. I met so many great teachers and students who taught me how to take my art to the next level. In fact, I still talk to my flatmate today! After Florence, we shared an art studio together in Seattle, WA where I started to sell my work and deem myself a true “artist”. I later journeyed down to California venturing through San Francisco, Ventura, and now LA. My paintings have altered slightly from place to place since each location has its unique influence over the creative process. Throughout my artistic journey, I have been endorsed by brands such as Lifewatr and TOMs Shoes. I continue to create everyday.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Although I went to school for art, I did not know anything about starting my own business. I was lucky enough to have a studio in a gallery that had several other artists working there as well. They helped me A LOT with everything I needed to do. The start-up costs for any business is rather expensive. It’s difficult focusing on creating when you need sufficient funds to live. Balancing a second job has always been part of the challenge. There’s always an ebb and flow between making art and working. Sometimes art is taking off and that takes precedence over everything else. Other times, jobs or life takes the forefront. Life is a challenge to balance in general!
Please tell us more about your art.
I am a fine artist specializing in drawing and painting. I am known for making charcoal drawings of women that are free and ephemeral. All my art has a sense of fluidity. My paintings vary from oceanic blues to a black and white color palette. I mainly paint abstract images of the earth or sea.
Through travel, I have experienced a diverse range of cultures in many countries. Each place I’ve lived has impacted my art in some way. Every place I travel, I collect knowledge about myself. I’ve had art teachers and fellow artists from different countries who helped me develop my work. Being able to study in Florence has definitely broadened my horizon, especially by learning from the masters. The human body and structural components to my realistic work really developed in Italy. I had to draw the sculptures crafted by Michelangelo or Da Vinci for my drawing class. Although they were static, they possessed movement and grace in every pose. They came to life portraying a story to their audience. That is what I wish to portray in my work… continuous movement and liveliness. It makes the eye bounce around a piece of work to create its own interpretation.
Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
I have had many cheerleaders throughout my art career. First, I would have to mention Diane MaCrae, owner of Venue in Seattle, Washington. Venue is a local artist shop that also contains individual artist’s studios inside the building. I distinctly remember entering the shop and instantly imagining myself creating there. By happenstance, a studio was opening that week! After meeting Diane and her lovely golden retriever, I knew it was a sign to begin my artist career there! Diane was the first retailer to believe in me.
When I was beginning to develop my own signature style for drawing, I discovered an artist on Pinterest named John Ligda. He saw that I kept saving his images and reached out to say thank you for appreciating his work. We started conversing about art and our similar taste in style. Soon after, we started working together and developing our performance art. While dancers performed their beguiling routines in front of us, we captured their movements by dancing and drawing simultaneously on the same piece of paper on one easel. It was quite a spectacle to watch, leading to an offer for the two of us to perform at several events including the San Francisco Movement of the Arts Festival. John really had an impact on my art and the way in which it was capable of interacting with the public.
Finally, my family has been the biggest supporter of my art. They’re always pushing me to create more! Their advice to me is, “Follow your passion. After all, you are your own best creation!”
- Website: www.juliettada.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @sikora.juliet
JULIET SIKORA (ALL ARTWORK), ABE LOPEZ