My name is Julia Crossland, and I'm a freelance artist and illustrator. I live in a village in Sheffield, Yorkshire, close to the wild and beautiful Pennines in the north of the UK.
I am inspired by the coast and the countryside, and this reflects in my work which is bright, colourful and uplifting. I work in a mostly illustrative style, and very much from my imagination.
I started drawing, painting and making when I was a young girl. I was fortunate to have a creative Mum and Nan, and they certainly encouraged me on my own art journey. I remember vividly the most amazing birthday, when I was about 13, they had clubbed together to buy me all these incredible art materials and a beautiful drawing board.
I studied Interior Design at the University of Plymouth, graduating in 1999. I took a stepping stone job after university as a signwriter while I hunted for design jobs. However, I really enjoyed it and carried on to work freelance throughout the UK and Ireland - this is how I met my partner and we finally settled in Sheffield together after almost six years on the road.
I decided I wanted to work for myself as an artist after my daughter was born in 2007, it was a job that I had yearned to do since being a child, and would fit in around my family. I started off at my dining table, but I have now moved down the garden to a beautiful studio.
Over the years, I feel I have really evolved as an artist, you will notice in my portfolio how I have gently changed direction over the years. Although I still enjoy painting coastal scenes, my more recent work sees me moving towards a very emotive and illustrative style of work, often incorporating text and which is inspired by nature and seasonal landscapes. I am very proud to have my work published and licensed by major UK companies including Whistlefish Galleries and Phoenix Trading, and I am delighted to be represented by Pure Illustration Licensing Agency.
I am also represented by several galleries within the UK and my work has also featured in exhibitions in both the UK and Northern Ireland. My work has also been featured in magazines and I was employed by an American publication to create a stunning front cover using textiles and embroidery to design a bride for their Valentines issue.
I also enjoy creating art with children and have been involved in some amazing projects at schools in Sheffield and Leeds including making and illustrating story books for World Book Day, and giving a talk to children who had created an exhibition based on my work. I've also run workshops at Sheffield Children's Hospital.
I am now excited to be exploring the opportunity of running art workshops and creating an art e-course. I am also keen to continue with my writing and one day hope to have a book published. In my spare time, I like cycling on the trans pennine trail with my family, going to yoga and taking long walks on our moors. I also love to travel to our stunning coast and enjoy spending time at Robin Hood's Bay, Sandsend and Whitby.