One of the cool side benefits that I hadn’t anticipated when I started my Patreon but should have, is that I would get the chance to develop relationships with artists that I had not met before. Julia Lundman is one such artist. She has been part of my mentorship tier for the last month. Many of you may know her and her work already, but in case you don’t, I felt like I had to share!
I think her work stands for itself. You can spend A LOT of time going through her Instagram account. Julia combines a wonderful sense of design with some exceptional drawing and painting skills.
Julia grew up in the military and lived in various places but the last few years of her high school experience were spent in Chicago. She went to the American Academy of Art in downtown Chicago. She has been working since then with over 25 years of commercial experience as an animator and in games.
She worked as a traditional animator in commercials, independent films, as a background designer, painter, storyboard clean up and providing art direction on everything that needed strong color and lighting. she moved to San Francisco in 2000 and worked for a variety of clients like EA, Zynga, Disney Interactive and various roles, eventually as an Art Director.
She has also illustrated books for Random House Little Golden Books. In short, she has worn a lot of different hats and has significant experience. Upon learning this, I was surprised that I hadn’t heard of her before but she has only recently started to work independently.
I can relate to working inside of a company and feeling like you are hidden from the world. It happens. It’s important to do personal work and reach out to this wonderful community. Fortunately, that’s exactly what Julia is doing now.
She is on a bit of a hiatus while she develops her own paintings and stories that have been buzzing around in her head throughout her career. She now starts the day in her sketchbook and then moves into finished works usually in oils or gouache. She treats the sketchbook time as “sacred” and has seen it fuel the development of her work.
Here are her words about her own work:
I am primarily interested in subjects connected to ancient ways of thinking about the land and the
folklore traditions that helped make sense of the landscape and animals that live there. I love
medieval art and am constantly in awe of illuminated manuscripts, patterns and decorative ornament
designs that came out of that tradition.
I look forward to seeing where Julia’s career takes her next. I think that she will have a real impact on fantasy illustration.
I purchased one of her Inktober drawings (the image below) and it is more beautiful in person than a photo can capture. There is so much story in one simple image.
Check out these wonderful gouache studies!
Check out the painting below. Scroll to the second slide, it’s a video that shows off the gold leafing.
View this post on Instagram
“Spring Bloom”, oil and gold leaf, 12×12. I loved working on this painting and hope to do a few more dryads throughout the seasons next year. For this one I wanted to work on something that was happy and bright. Eventually I will gild the outer frame with gold leaf, too. The reflections on gold leaf are challenging when photographing, so I thought I’d show a quick video clip. #oilpainting #painting #art #fantasyartist #illustrators
Julia is incredibly versatile, but I think that she is at her best realizing the visions of her own imagination. Keep it up, Julia! I can’t wait to see what you do next!