Describing the world with paint and brush |

Describing the world with paint and brush

Aggie Zaremba
Artist Julie Spinnato of West Vail.

“I can’t remember not painting,” said Spinnato. “My first drawing attempt ruined the wallpaper my parents had just hung in their room. But instead of disciplining me, they sent me to drawing classes.”

Her parents’ support along with painting lessons, a solid art program at her high school, and finally architecture studies at Carnegie Melon University in Pittsburgh, Penn. turned her childhood enthusiasm into plans to become a professional painter.

“Becoming a professional artist is a long process,” said Spinnato. “I am still learning about different methods as well as the business part of painting.”

She admits living in a local community creates various opportunities to exhibit her works and meet other artists, which helps in developing her skills and knowledge as a painter.

“My last discovery was that I need to be more consistent as far as the theme of my works is concerned,” said Spinnato. “I am an eclectic person, which often resulted in paintings completely unrelated to each other in subject and style.”

“Aspen Series,” her latest project, is on display at Plaza Gallery in Vail. It’s a reflection of this new approach Spinnato took after participating in a handful of local arts events.

“I would say my surroundings influence me more than anything,” she said. “I got fascinated with aspens since they change so drastically, depending on the season, weather or even time of day. Additionally, drawing aspens I can easily express the sense of depth without darkness as aspen is light.”

People are another favorite theme. Her paintings abound in exotic characters from Jamaica, Fiji, Thailand and Malaysia, places she’s travelled to.

“I like to grasp emotions in my models’ faces,” she said. “All my portraits have a story hidden behind.”

The next series Spinnato is planning to paint will be bar scenes. She is also going to broaden her aspen collection.

“I would like to do a night scene as well as shades of light and off-light,” she said. “I was also thinking about using different mediums, maybe paint with pastels on dark paper.”

Asked about future goals, she said she would like to have her own studio, be a mum and work at home.

In the meantime, she tries to make her name as an artist locally. She’s one of the new artists recently accepted to Plaza Gallery in Vail. She participated in the Arts and Crafts Fair last year and was also one of the artists who decorated Vail’s electrical boxes last summer. Her works compliment the walls of Park Hyatt Cafe and Covered Bridge Coffee. To see Spinnato’s work visit the Plaza Gallery, located behind the Alpenrose.

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