“The people of Teesside are down to earth, friendly with a strong sense of community spirit and I’m immensely proud of my Middlesbrough roots.”
Teesside-born artist Julie Foster Walker might not live in the Tees area anymore but she is very proud of her Teesside roots. Many of her paintings are themed on landmarks around the Tees, representing her childhood growing up in Middlesbrough, and Julie is definitely helping put the Tees art scene on the map.
Chloe Tempestoso spoke to her about her Middlesbrough artwork and what Teesside means to her.
What does Teesside mean to you?
Although I’ve lived on the edge of the New Forest in Hampshire for many years, Teesside will always be home to me, and I love coming home and being with family and old friends. The people of Teesside are down to earth, friendly with a strong sense of community spirit and I’m immensely proud of my Middlesbrough roots.
What made you get into art?
I’ve always enjoyed art and music and although we didn’t have a lot of money when we were growing up, we always had an old piano in the house which I loved. As an adult I dabbled a bit with drawing at home and when my children were older and I had more free time, I went along to a local art group. My first painting was of boats at Paddy’s Hole, Redcar, painted in oils with a palette knife and this has continued to be the main medium for my painting. I received positive comments from other artists and encouraged to enter exhibitions winning awards and selling my work.
Why do you think it’s important for more younger people in the area to get into art?
There are many artists and groups in the area plus you have the fabulous MIMA with lots of learning activities and exhibitions. Being creative and expressing yourself, be it through painting or music, enables you to develop a sense of self expression and how you feel. There are so many advantages to exploring art, one being looking and focusing on the world around you. This single one thing is fantastic.
If you are wanting to view some of Julie Foster Walker’s artwork, please look at her Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/JulieFosterWalkerArt/
Interview By Chloe Tempestoso