Julie Smith


"Bert's Palm Trees"






"Currents in a Single Flow"




I moved to the United States from Austria in 1966 to be with my American husband. Eventually, we     landed in Los Angeles, and although the marriage did not last, we stayed good friends.  My dad’s love of art (he had been a hobby painter, doing sketches, watercolors and oils, and later in life restoration of some church paintings), inspired me to take some drawing classes after work now that I was living alone.  That was in 1973.  Then my attention shifted and I stopped drawing.


Forty years later, after having moved to the Ojai area, a friend asked me to join her in the Ojai Art Tour.  Never having seen pastel paintings it was love at first sight.  In 2014 I began to study with the Ojai Icon Bert Collins and have been with her ever since. Through Bert I also studied with Albert Handell, Dan Schultz, and Terri Ford.


I usually paint from my photographs: landscapes, still lifes, people and animals.   I am also painting en plein air,  observing the  shifting  light and  shadows.


The bright colors here in California appeal very much to my nature and I am like a sponge absorbing everything around me.


Art has given me a new outlook on life, spiritual as well as visual, and I consider it wonderful therapy as a balance to my Ombudsman and hospice volunteer activities.  Can’t imagine being without painting for the rest of my life – a wonderful addiction!


Julie Smith

Pastel Artist

(805) 649-8862




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