By Jan Westmark
Julie Ferris was one of those kids who drew horses all the time. All of her friends asked her to draw horses for them, and she did. In high school, however, her teachers told her she wasn’t allowed to paint any horses because it was too “kitschy” a subject.
It’s hard to keep a good horsewoman down, and Julie’s no exception. “The very minute I had the opportunity to begin painting the horse in college I did. I didn’t waste any time,” she said. The result: exquisite portraits painted on white backgrounds. And as far from “kitschy” as you can get. “I intentionally choose to create white backgrounds so that there are no other distractions from the subject.”
Julie attended Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) where she also rode on the SCAD Equestrian Team for four years. Now 25 and living in Savannah, Georgia, Julie doesn’t own a horse, but enjoys working with project horses when she gets the chance.
“Honestly I would rather be riding than painting them, but painting them is the next best thing to riding! I do hope to own a horse one day that I can compete with and just enjoy,” she said.
In the meantime, Julie will continue to paint and is happy that her dream career as an equestrian artist has come true. She remembers her first commissioned equine portrait. “I couldn’t believe I was being paid to do what I really love doing. That was a huge success for me.”
To learn more about Julie, visit www.julieferrisart.com.
All photos courtesy of Julie Ferris