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Meet Julie Orr of L.A. Art Lessons & Events

Today we’d like to introduce you to Julie Orr.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Julie. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I think my passion for teaching art grew from my own experience of realizing art as a crucial part of my own development and identity. I grew up in a conservative New England town, where the arts weren’t always emphasized or valued as much as other disciplines. It was in high school that I really immersed myself in art courses and music, finding an outlet for my emotions and expression, during a confusing period of adolescence. Art not only helped me express myself in a way that I needed but it gave me a real sense of purpose and self that I was trying to find. Knowing how crucial artistic expression was for me in understanding myself and the world around me, I want to help others find or better express their own voice. I believe that being able to innovate and express is a human need that isn’t necessarily always recognized or valued. I find a lot of joy in helping others fuel their create flame.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It hasn’t been a smooth road. That comes with the territory of being a creative in Los Angeles I think though! This is my first run at starting a business so I’ve had to learn the ropes as a I go. In particular, I’ve spent money on things like advertising and promotional events that were sometimes expensive and ineffective. The unpredictability of business has been challenging also. Some months we are booked with lots of classes and events, while it can slow down during other times, usually the summer months. I am learning to just roll with the ebbs and flows though.

L.A. Art Lessons & Events – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
L.A. Art Lessons & Events is a mobile service that brings a pop-up studio to the client’s location. We create high quality art lessons that explore various principles and elements of art. We also provide craft tables and workshops for events like corporate parties, bar mitzvahs, birthday parties, weddings, etc. For parties we create an engaging project for guests based on a particular theme adding a fun, interactive element to an event. Art projects include anything from graffiti art, masks, puppets, t-shirts, to realistic painting. We also provide creative services like live painting, murals and commissioned art.

A lot of people are familiar with the trendy “paint party” or “paint and sip” which generally involves a group of people making the same painting in steps taught by an instructor. While I love that people are getting away from their phones and getting together to make art, I am not a big fan of the “paint by numbers” approach that has become ubiquitous with classes and paint parties. I believe in teaching technical skills while at the same time allowing the artist to create a piece of artwork that is his or her own unique expression. My teaching method is different in that I help clients create their own visual composition, then develop it step-by-step using different application techniques with some instruction and guidance.

I am proud of exposing clients to visual art, whether it is enjoying a more unique way to entertain and interact at events or developing personally as an artist.

What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
Probably landing some exciting art shows, including a solo show in New York City a few years back. Also, teaching art to some successful people whom I admire. It is exciting to look up to clients who in turn value you as an artist and teacher.

Contact Info:


Image Credit:

Kelli Radwanski
Julie Orr

Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

1 Comment

  1. Linda M.

    January 5, 2018 at 23:58

    Such a wonderful interview and article about Julie and her business, LA Art Lessons & Events. What an interesting business concept! Loved the photos of her events and the joy she brings to her clients/students.

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