Treasured Montana Artist Statement
I started drawing as soon as I could hold a pencil, and have never stopped. I grew up on a small family farm, where we spent summers working in the garden, baling hay, climbing trees, catching butterflies and hanging laundry. I was fascinated by every form of life on our 60 acres of hayfields, trees and pasture. My childhood instilled in me a deep love for the outdoors, and I drew obsessively.
I crave firsthand experience for inspiration, and I spend a lot of time each year in pursuit of reference material. I’m very privileged to live so close to splendid wilderness and wildlife. Since moving to Montana, I’ve discovered small-town summertime rodeos and have become enamored with the color, action and excitement – and it allows me to paint horses, which I have loved since I was a child!
It’s great fun to head off to a rodeo, stand out in the sun and dust for hours, and take a little piece of the adrenaline in the arena away with me. My work has evolved from straightforwardly representational to something with a more contemporary edge. I’m having fun playing with abstract backgrounds, sizzling streaks of color, and big loose brushwork and knifework. Art is not a destination, but a journey. I look forward to seeing where my work goes.
All photographs on this page © Julie T. Chapman and are protected by U.S. copyright laws. They are not to be downloaded or reproduced in any way under penalty of the law.