"Pour your intention into your dreams, and they will come true."
Hi - I'm Juliene! Thanks for visiting me here. I'm a Bozeman-based artist who believes in fiercely pursuing your dreams, which for me includes a combination of persistence, patience, perseverance, failure, hard work, trust, doubt, self-forgiveness, and self-motivation. Let me explain …
I always was an “artist”. Like all kids, as a young pup I drew, painted, created, and imagined. Also like most kids, as I got older my art kinda fell by the wayside. My creativity came out here and there, but it wasn’t my main pursuit. I went to high school in Germany where I took art classes, exploring abstract faces and figures mostly. I applied to art schools out of high school, but got rejected. It wasn’t necessarily “my passion”, and so I went in a different direction - studying international business in Spain for my first year of university, then eventually moving to So Cal to be with family where I attended a community college for a few semesters. In So Cal I started picking my paint brush back up and just exploring as a way to express some stuff that was going on in my life.
Eventually though, the Universe lead me to apply to an environmental engineering undergrad program in Humboldt State University. I’ll be real - this seemed like a fluke at the time because I always struggled severely with math, but the redwoods + ocean + “environmental” sounded good. Sometime at Humboldt State, I decided I needed to take some painting classes, thinking that maybe I would get a minor in studio art. My first painting professor was absolutely amazing - she clearly saw something in me so she pushed me to the extreme. In one quick semester with her as a professor, I was developing the painting skills I had always craved. But still, painting was just a hobby - I was, after all, studying engineering!
After graduating, my now husband and I moved to Bozeman, Montana. After getting my first job as an engineer, I realized something was missing and I sunk into some pretty dark years. I felt lied to in college - everyone had told me I would be employable, but no one asked if engineering would make me happy. So, I started screwing around with side hustles - thinking that if I could generate income and open up some time, I could start painting again. Side hustle after side hustle failed after becoming a burden instead of a joyful escape.
In the meantime, I figured I should take the professional engineering exam - the brutal 8 hour professional licensure exam which requires a suggested 300 hours of study preparation. Long story short, I failed the hell out of the exam. What a blow. No details are required to express this disappointment.
Many people re-take the exam the next testing session - but I knew deep down that I needed to ground myself and figure out what I really wanted, and so I decided to wait until I felt that the time was right. During this time, one by one I took the anxiety-inducing side hustles off my plate. Once my plate was clear, I filled the whole plate with art - not knowing where it would take me, and not caring. Not only that though, I got good at my engineering job - taking on more responsibilities and becoming more and more confident with my work.
Eventually, my mind and heart felt strong enough to re-take the exam. Regardless of whether I wanted to be an engineer or not, I wanted to get that professional licensure. I wanted to prove to myself that an artist could also be an engineer, and that my lifetime struggle with math was all in my head. And indeed - it was - I passed (whooo hooo!).
“If I can do that - I can do absolutely anything” I told myself. And with that, my creativity broke free from its tether and was free to roam. I allowed myself the freedom to explore various mediums and content - I needed to figure out how my creativity was going to fit in with my story and this beautiful place that I was.
During the months that I was studying to re-take the exam, I was able to fit in my first (unpaid) mural for the City of Bozeman in one of their parks. Feeling resourceful, I had my best friend nominate it for a Bozeman Beautification Award - and I won! I leveraged that award and press coverage to get my first commissioned mural in downtown Bozeman. In the summer of 2019, I landed two commissioned murals and painted two fun free ones (check out my Wall tab!) simply for the experience and the exposure. I was now painting because it brought me joy, not because I was expecting something from it. This was the key - and now slowly but surely my art is getting its own legs.
After lots of experimenting, reflecting, and pondering - my work is beginning to combine spirituality and wildlife. Landscape and wildlife artists abound in Montana, and I wanted to be different. My years in Europe have pulled me to public art; my travels to Asia and personal spirituality are creating unique design styles, and; my adventures in Montana are drawing me to wildlife, which I believe connect humans to their surroundings because wildlife are sensient like us, but live in the wilderness that we crave.
How can I do this with as full time engineering job - where I am a senior design engineer and a project manager? Well my friend, my secret is waking up at 4 am to work on my art. In fact, as I write this it is 6:30 am and I have already spent a couple hours on a rough draft sketch for a commission I have coming up. This isn’t my only secret of course - but the other ones are simply ingrained in me. I believe if you want something enough, you’ll find a way if you are willing to pour your intentions into it.
This is my story and I’m so grateful you’ve come here to visit. Enjoy!