I've had the wonderful opportunity to partner with The Outdoor Lab Foundation for Jeffco Schools in Colorado.
Outdoor Lab has been enriching the lives of 6th grade and high school students in Jefferson County for more than 60 years. Located in the mountains of Colorado, Mount Evans and Windy Peak Schools give ALL students the opportunity to explore and experience subjects such as earth science, wildlife biology, astronomy and forestry in a unique mountain setting.
I'm excited to announce that 50% of the sale for either painting will go directly to the Outdoor Lab to help support their amazing program, forever.
Here are the links to each painting:
Outdoor Lab: Mt. Evans
Outdoor Lab: Windy Peak
Outdoor Lab Foundation
Feeling vulnerable about now?
Driving home from The Grove Park Inn on Feb. 25th with one of my life-long friends (Terri Boylan), listening to Brené Brown's The Power of Vulnerability was a highlight for me. I had just come from the 34th Annual Arts & Crafts Conference for the 7th year in a row in Asheville, North Carolina. I had sold my artwork to peers, collectors, and respected & dear friends. I had the great joy and honor to facilitate a Roycroft Artisan brainstorm session with some of the most talented people on the planet that are like family to me. I had amazing conversations about the future, full of excitement and discovery. You just can't stop me after Grove Park Inn every year. I get SO filled up with all the good in the world, all the healthy choices I want to make for myself, all the friendships that have deepened, all the art I want to create... it's really a spiritual experience for me on many levels.
As we were driving home on that Tuesday, my hubby called me and told me the CDC was saying that COVID-19 wasn't a question of "if, but when" it would hit. That it would disrupt daily life for everyone. This was a sobering moment to say the least. I didn't go into denial, I went into "what can I control" mode. I made it home Wed. afternoon, unpacked my car from the art show, and headed straight over to Costco for a cart-worth of, well, everything. It was surreal in many ways. Seeing all the shelves full, seeing normal shopping happening, no one worried about much of anything. I was grateful for each and every item in that huge store. I was calm, but reserved as I walked up and down isles, picking out all sorts of tasty varieties for the days ahead. I was thinking to myself, this may be the last normal shopping trip for me for a time. It wasn't. I returned to the grocery store the next day to buy things I forgot, and the next day because I didn't think to buy x, y, or z. It was almost like the twilight zone everywhere I went - for a full two weeks, my husband and I thought maybe we were going crazy --no one else was paying any attention, and the collective denial of our fellow man was HUGE. Everyone around me and on social media was making a joke of how blown out of proportion this whole thing was, and some actively mocking and belittling anyone that was voicing any sort of concern. I felt very alone. Yesterday, March 11th arrives, and WHO declares it a pandemic. Everyone is forced to see it now, things start to change. Everything closes down: schools, sports, concerts, tourism, conventions, airlines, stocks. I asked myself, what is in my control? Cleaning. Taking my kids out of school one day before the district extends Spring Break. Staying home. Numbing out to a favorite movie. Working on taxes. Washing my hands. Mindfulness on not touching my face. Breathing. Treadmill. Meditation. Being grateful for all that I have...
In The Power of Vulnerability, Brené talks about how we as humans handle crisis. We have one of two paths: under function, or over function. That's it. I am an over function queen in crisis. I tick off the checklist, I do the deeds. I gett'er done. I'm also an under performer in crisis when I think I've run out of my list of things I can control. I've laid in bed in the fetal position and scrolled the news on my phone plenty too. The key to these patterns that we all share is to be aware of which one you are in. Take the time to do a self scan. Am I over performing? That means I may be stressing out the people I'm with, I may be barreling ahead too much without thinking. I may be adding stress to my crisis. Am I under performing? Am I frozen in unrealized fear, ready to numb out at all cost? Am I not functioning like I need to be? I say to myself "Jules, you are under functioning. Get up." This very new practice is really working for me. I tend to bounce back and forth between the two, but with smaller amounts of time between. Smaller waves. It's a great regulator to take the time to check in on yourself and see where you are on this simple, binary topic. All the emotions come into play still, but if I use these terms, I find that I can see it better as constructive criticism, and the negative self-talk can't take hold. Brené 's research on the 10 Guideposts for Wholehearted Living is a daily ritual for me to review now too:
This audible book is different than her TED Talk, it's not in printed form that I know of. This is a culmination of all of Brené Brown's decades of research. It's brilliant. Six 1-hour sessions that will change your life. Session 5 & 6 are all about these guideposts. I've listened to this talk 3 times now in the last 7 months. I recommend a listen through, and then a second pass with paper and pen for notes because there are so many nuggets of wisdom everywhere. Terri and I had 21 hours of road in front of us, and it didn't shock me even a little that we would listen, pause the book and talk, and then listen again for the entire drive. We had 15 hours of the most authentic, caring, and vulnerable conversation two best friends could have.
We all are going to have a bit more time on our hands perhaps with all the disruption to our daily lives. What will you do with your time?
What if we can lessen the blow of a different disease, the "Disease of Busy" (too much stress, too much work, too many activities, too much travel, too much everything) because of COVID-19? What if the silver lining is that we make it a goal to slow down, we find time to appreciate our family more, ourselves more and seek deeper connections? Pickup that guitar that's gathering dust, or learn how to really use that new tech thing you bought that's still in the box. Catch up on your family photo albums... play those games that are in the closet. What if we can take some of this balance back out into our world when this crisis fades? I believe we have a global opportunity to collectively use this gift of more time. We may even leave a larger impact on our planet than we can fathom. Wouldn't that be something? It may not impact the whole world for very long, but this gift of time could impact your life, and your family for many years to come, if you choose it.
I know this hiatus from the norm will increase my gratitude, make me a better mom, wife, artist, cook, and house-cleaner. Setting this intention now for myself is how I'm going to succeed. It's how I'm going to honor my creator and the universe for the positive, collateral and residual good that can come out of something so unknown.
Spare 5 minutes?
I'd love to get your feedback on my art so I've created a short survey. If you can spare 5-10 minutes, I'd be so grateful.
Growth is something I really seek out in my art business. I'm also a big believer in good communication, and I can learn so much from you. If you could spare just a few moments for this short survey, I would be so grateful. Skip any questions you don't want to fill out, or talk my ear off and let me hear your voice on all of it!
As a personal thank you gift for your time, enjoy a 15% off coupon code at the end of this survey for use on my website, www.thebungalowcraft.com
References: Treasures of GSA Library, Wikipedia, Pinterest
Encounter with Elk herd on HWY 74
I want to help bring balance to people’s lives through art. Simply put, I want my artistic expression to be a reminder to seek out genuine human connection and true closeness to nature (and the divine) while focusing on the present moment.
As I write, I realize I want to explain more about why I have this goal, not only for my art but for my life.
I want to be part of a movement to wake people up from the zombie-like state that technology can trap us in. We are near people every day without connecting to them. We reach more people than ever before in history through technology, sometimes without a single thought of making a positive interaction. We tend to over-correct in response to this over-stimulated, over-busy, over-stressed society we live in by shutting out true connections and replacing them with artificial ones. We walk into people on the street absentmindedly, or crash our cars into other cars because we are too busy “connecting” to people through our smart phones.
Technological development has paved the way for invention, innovation and improvement in almost every aspect of our modern lives, yet this constant hum of synthetic reality has become a replacement for genuine human connection.
We are in close proximity 24/7 to other humans around the globe, mostly through artificial devices: smart phones, computers, automobiles, head phones, televisions, Apple Watches, iPads, gaming consoles, video surveillance, virtual reality, and many more. Technology is swirling around us all the time through apps, social media, websites, email, radio, texts, pod casts, news casts, movies, gaming, programming, and the list goes on and on. We can stand feet or even inches away from people without acknowledging them. We can sit with loved ones to share a meal without even talking to them, looking down at the technology in front of us instead. I see each of these advancements as a possible brick in a larger wall of isolation around our souls if we aren't careful to find balance. The way technology fosters multi-tasking and hyper productivity in our daily life is also a major cause of stress, overwhelming us with a sense of being too busy for honest, heart-felt connection to one another.
We, as the human race, have morphed into human doings, not human beings. I find it interesting that the Oxford dictionary definition of human being is this: “a man, woman, or child of the species Homo sapiens, distinguished from other animals by superior mental development, power of articulate speech, and upright stance.” Think about this for a moment. Has our superior mental development (as it relates to our constant use of technology) hindered our power to articulate speech with our actual vocal cords? Has it even cut into our ability and opportunity for upright stance on a regular basis? Has our artificial, constant closeness to people mindlessly changed our ability to really “plug in” to a human connection on a soulful and healthy level?
Has technology changed how we human? (Yes, I’m changing “human” to a verb for a second.)
Human connection isn’t just about those closest to us. It doesn’t stop at our family and friends or our co-workers and classmates – those souls that we have put more effort into, or those people that we have just spent more time around. Human connection to me also happens as we walk on the sidewalk, as we drive down the road, as we take up space in a room of a building, as we stand on our earth, under the sun or moon, and of course as we use our various technological devices. But, we have literally thousands of opportunities for human connection every single day to the people that are right next to us, physically not just virtually.
I’ve been selling my artwork at art shows and festivals for nine years, and I’ve had conversations with literally tens of thousands of people. For the last two years of my journey, I changed my focus when I’m at a show meeting new people. I very purposely set a new intention for that part of my life, which ends up being over 50 full days a year. I actively talk to strangers that end up walking out as friends. I didn’t want my focus to be solely on selling my art (to make a living) but my purpose shifted to really, genuinely connect with people in the here and now. I want to hear their stories of connection to the land and nature, and also to each other. I want to listen to their memories that my paintings may bring to the surface. Over the last two years especially, I’ve paid attention. I see the human spirit in beautiful new and surprising ways. I see people struggle with the same things I struggle with, while at the same time seeing how unique and special and different they all are. My empathy and compassion has increased, and my judgement has slowed. I want to learn from others, even if we only cross paths for a few moments in this lifetime. I can’t tell you how much this has changed by artwork, and my perspective on life. I was scared to be that present, to make it my goal to really connect because I really thought it would be draining at first. I’ve been blown away by how much this focus has filled me up, in direct contrast to my fears. I literally find myself some days trying to figure out why other artists are starting tear down so early, only to discover that the day has flown by because it was filled with so many great conversations.
That said, I screw up this goal all. the. time. I forget to focus on my intention to connect. I get tired and hot, or worried about that big dark cloud, or the fact that I have to use the restroom and I don’t know how to sneak away for a second to take care of me. I get annoyed at thoughtless comments by others. I forget to turn off my inner monologue to focus on listening to the person in front of me. I can give so much to new people during the day, that I may forget to give that same attention and 10 times more to my own family and friends. But, I know I’m making progress. I know I can turn that mindful, present-moment focus on quicker and more often when I practice it regularly. I know there’s always room for improvement.
I know that my life is richer and more colorful and inspired and full, not because of the technology that makes my life easier, but by the human beings that cross my path each day and their openness to connect to me, especially if they see the door is open. This is what I want people to take home with them in my artwork too: Genuine human connection and true closeness to nature (and the divine) while focusing on the present moment.
I share this long manifesto with you today because I’ve also made it a goal of mine to define my mission as an artist (as it turns out) on virtual paper, not just in my head alone. I hope this is the beginning of many new experiences I can open myself up to as a business owner, dreamer, artist, and of course, human being.
Chalklola Arts - https://www.chalkola.com
To catch a thief...
Looking for Help: I've recently found out that someone is actively selling paper prints and reproductions of my EXACT artwork without permission, or compensation to me as the artist. They have been selling in the Colorado Springs area in April, and may be in more retail locations and shows. I'm asking for help my friends. If you see a store or booth location with my artwork out there (and I'm not there, or they aren't on my current list of locations: https://www.thebungalowcraft.com/shows--locations.html) will you please grab the sellers information and post a picture of them and my art for me here? It would mean the world to me. Thank you deeply for your help in catching an active thief. Just post a pic and tell me when and where you saw my work and I'd be happy to verify that it's legit. Much love and gratitude...
Arts & Crafts Homes and the Revival Magazine
The Hills Are Alive...
My daughter Abby in Grindelwald, Switzerland
Leidel's in Laterbrunnen, Switzerland
Hallstatt, Austria. So breathtakingly beautiful that the Chinese built an exact replica of this town!
My daughter swooped up into a Mozart Opera in Salzburg, Austria
I've recently been commissioned by the Civic Center Conservancy to create a painting to commemorate the 100th anniversary of The Greek Theater and Civic Center Park in Downtown Denver. On this journey, I've found and fallen in love with the artwork of Allen Tupper True (1881-1955.) and I wanted to share some of his amazing story here.
He was born in Colorado Springs, and spent a great deal of his life here in Colorado. He grew up living at a time where the west was still a beautiful combination of early settlers, Native Americans, frontiersman, trappers, and prospectors. His goal was to always tell the true story of his American West: the hardships, virtues, spirituality, work ethic, and daily life of all the people living here at the turn of the century.
Photo Credit: Victoria Tupper Kirby in her book Allen Tupper True: An American Artist
Sunshine Artist Magazine Poster Winner
DYI: Flatten your Art Canvas for Framing
Here's my trick to take a gallery-wrapped art canvas down to a thickness you can easily frame on your own. The reason I do this is simple. My printer does a STELLAR job in professionally adhering the art canvas to the inside backer board. No mat or glass is needed to bring this art canvas to life in a standard frame. I tried ordering rolled canvas prints, and I couldn't get them to lay flat to save my life it seemed. Then, I realized that this part is already done for me, I just need to make it flat for most frames.
I open up the back, pull off the black backer board (usually in many chunks) and then take out the foam core center. I then gently open up the artwork like a present to lay all the edges flat. If you have box cutters and a cutting mat, then you have everything you need to make that art canvas lie flat for framing without a mat. As you open up the back, you’ll see the beveled edge on the inside that makes the corners so nice and flat when it's folded up. No ruler needed, you just run your knife along that inside beveled edge and it cuts perfectly to size.
Make my art, YOUR art by customizing it to get the designer look you want!
Meaning Behind "The Raven"
I've had some questions about my raven and the meaning. There's a lot tucked into this one. The messy tail feathers are very much on purpose.
In my raven, there's an Art Nouveau feel of course, so there are some curves thrown in, but most importantly, this raven is a truth seeker. Especially when it's hard and can be unbelievably brave to tell the truth. This raven and the motto were inspired initially by the "silence breakers" of 2017 and beyond. It's quite literally meant to ruffle tail feathers. The truth isn't always easy, and it's not always attainable for many.
Odin (from Norse Mythology) had two truth-seeking ravens fly the world and report back to him. They were named Thought (Huginn) and Memory (Muninn.)
In each voyage for every individual, I believe that if we strive to speak truth, happiness is close at hand. Speak truth not only in the present to those around us but, even more importantly, to ourselves. The narrative we end up believing about our inner self through our thoughts and our memories needs to be checked or even reevaluated from time to time. Are we holding up truth even then? Are we honoring our truth by not tearing ourselves down with our inner monologue? Are we glossing over something we really should feel remorse for and make it right? Are we being fair, loving, and truthful to the one inside? Be honest... The voyage of self discovery is the longest journey we'll encounter in our lifetime.
CJ Hurley Century Arts comes to Colorado
Please join The Colorado Arts and Crafts Society on Saturday, January 20, 2018 for our annual Winter Symposium at the Boettcher Mansion. We are delighted to bring CJ Hurley Century Arts to Colorado as our featured speakers this year. Roycroft Master Artisan CJ Hurley and Barbara Pierce are a dynamic design team from Oil City, PA (formerly from Portland, OR) specializing in historic homes. This is a special year where, in addition to our CACS Symposium, we also have CJ & Barbara for an extended stay (with more activities happening on Sunday, Jan. 21st at Modern Bungalow in Denver, and Monday, Jan. 22nd potentially happening in your very own home). Keep reading this issue of The Arts & Crafts Messenger to see the full line-up of events. (See attached 2017_Dec.pdf file below.)
We’ll begin the Symposium from 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. with a professional color workshop by Barbara Pierce. The evening program will begin at 4:30 p.m. with a cocktail hour where beer, wine and light appetizers will be served. Our annual business meeting, catered buffet, and presentation will be underway shortly thereafter. CJ Hurley will be our keynote speaker and his presentation entitled Artistic Couples of the Arts & Crafts Movement: Frances MacDonald & Herbert McNair and Carl & Karin Larsson will begin around 6:30 p.m. in the Mansion’s Fireside Room.
Admission is $40 for members ($50 for guests) and will include a catered dinner brought to us by The Pines at Genesee. RSVP to Cynthia Shaw at 720-497-7632 by January 16th. This is a wonderful opportunity to bring friends or family to learn more about the Arts & Crafts Movement, and sign up for a color consultation for their bungalow or historic home.
What's better than deep discounts and overstock sales on artwork this holiday season? How about deep discounts ON overstock sales! That's right, I'm running two sales at once, and you can pile on the savings now through Dec. 31st.
The Meaning Behind Wisdom Tree
There's a lone tree atop a hill filling tens of thousands of people with inspiration, a sense of stability, connection to nature, and peace. This tree isn't deep in the Rocky Mountains, or on a hilltop somewhere in a remote part of Tibet. Nope, it's in an environment that you may least suspect from the description you just read. It's in the heart of Los Angeles, California.
This aging gnarled pine is a respite from the hustle and bustle below. People from all over the world hike to this singular tree in hopes of changing their perspective. Not just by the view, but by the words, images, song lyrics, and letters of inspiration that people leave in a box beneath the tree for all to read. It's a place to reconnect with Mother Earth, amid a sea of busy. It's a place to rest and breathe, and stretch, and write. Wisdom Tree represents a vein of hope for the natural world and a reminder to lift your head up and seek stillness if even for a short moment each day.
Original gouache painting 16" x 20" Framed in quartersawn oak - $2600.00. Prints available.
FLLW: Painting In Progress
Photo Credit: Christina Pfitzinger
Modern Bungalow has chosen me to be their featured artist for October and November. Thank you Modern Bungalow!
If you live in the Denver area and like my artwork, chances are really good you'll LOVE this amazing Arts & Crafts home furnishing store. Ed and Kate Sultan have recently sold their business to two dear friends of mine, Matt Hubbard & Danielle Sandusky. It's been an amazing journey to see these four lovely people share in a love for the Arts & Crafts Movement and it's revival. Through this process, they've also grown to be life-long friends. Stop in Modern Bungalow this month to say farewell and hello to these amazing individuals, and to see 7 of my original paintings and art prints for sale.
14th Annual Painted Violin Project
I'm so honored to be one of the ten chosen artists for the Painted Violin Project for Denver Young Artists Orchestra (DYAO.) The event is November 12th, and you can learn more about my violin at http://www.paintedviolin.com/meet-the-artists/julie-leidel/
To purchase YAO concert tickets and come to the Painted Violin Opening Reception, please visithttps://lakewood.showare.com/eventperformances.asp?evt=251
Evergreen Open Door Studios
You and your friends are invited to tour Julie Leidel's Evergreen art studio Sept. 16-17, 10:00 - 5:00pm
The Bungalow Craft will open it's doors to the public! Come visit Julie Leidel and see her home and art studio, current artwork in progress, and experience her inspiration in the Arts & Crafts Movement (1880-1920) and the Colorado Rocky Mountains. Walk our mountain foot trail, and enjoy the neighboring elk and deer.
Julie will also have LOADS of artwork for sale: Original paintings, art canvas prints, matted prints, magents, and notecards. There will even be an overstock and bargan bin with some great end-of-season deals. Commission work is also available.
Wine and appitizers will be served while you experience what The Bungalow Craft is all about this Fall. www.thebungalowcraft.com | www.EvergreenOpenDoorStudios.com
BILLBOARD PHOTO CONTEST
I've been chosen as the featured artist for this year's 5th annual Cheesman Park Arts Festival - July 29 & 30th. There are 18 billboards up around Denver that have my artwork featured on them for the show.
To celebrate, I’m holding a PHOTO CONTEST! Post a picture of one of my billboards on your Instagram or Facebook timeline by Friday, July 28th, mention Julie Leidel and add a link to my website www.thebungalowcraft.com. Stop by my booth (E6 & E7) July 29 or 30th at the Cheesman Park art show and show me your post, and I'll give you one 8x10 print for $55 (Retails for $75.)
THERE WILL BE ONE GRAND PRIZE WINNER FOR BEST PHOTO! By the end of the show, I'll have picked a winner from the photos that are brought to me in person. The most creative photographer will win a FREE 20x24 Art Canvas Print of my artwork - you pick your favorite painting! (Retails for $350)
BILLBOARD LOCATIONS AROUND DENVER:
E. Colfax & Park Ave West, 4221 Steele, 5225 Leetsdale, 2063 Larimer, 3550 Brighton, 4635 E. Colfax, 2223 E. Colfax, 2401 W. Evans, 3800 Kalamath, 3636 Brighton, 3620 Downing, 3659 Marion, 2261 California, 50 W. 12th, 2050 W. 2nd, 3654 E. 50th
1180 W. Custer, and 290 Federal.
Julie Leidel shares news and musings on inspiration for her artwork.