Julia Herrero of Sharpsburg 

Traditional and, impressionistic paintings in oil, acrylics, pastel, drawings and more


Artist struggles

Posted on May 8, 2016 at 11:00 PM

Being an Artist is a gift and this gift doesn’t come free. Creative people see the world differently. They have a deep passion for making beautiful things. They feel more intense. They have ideas which don’t let them sleep at night. They have an inspiration, they work and then it suddenly happens that they are lost. All work didn’t come out how it was expected. They have feelings of not being good enough. These struggles are common part of an artist life. To be successful artist sometimes doesn’t mean to be paid good. So what? If happens that at the end they are satisfied with their work - it worth it because they are their own worst critics.

"Prostrate demon" Mikhail Vrubel

Posted on June 11, 2015 at 7:05 PM

"In early 1902 one of the most famous paintings of Mikhail Vrubel - "Demon Downcast" - was shown to the public at an exhibition in St. Petersburg. Shortly before the events surrounding the artist began to notice symptoms of a mental disorder. Memories of friends and family allow you to restore the chronology of the past, sorrowful years of life of a great artist.

AdMe.ru publishes the story of genius Mikhail Vrubel, who until his death was true creativity.

"Demon Downcast", 1901-1902

1901 was marked by a major family event - Mikhail Vrubel and his wife Nadezhda Ivanovna's son. Couple preparing for this event a lot of fun, they thought that having a baby does not hurt their elegant and secular life, they dream, as we have with the child will go abroad to expose the "Demon".

"Seated Demon" in 1890 (before the illness)

The couple waited for a terrible disappointment - the boy was born with a split upper lip is deeply impressed by Mikhail Vrubel. From the moment of his relatives and friends began to notice that the artist is something wrong.

Mikhail Vrubel and his wife, Ivanovna Zabela Vrubel, 1892 (before the illness)

Vrubel paints a portrait of his son, who was named Sava, and it gives the appearance that the expression of extreme anxiety, which probably is going through himself.

"Portrait of the Artist's Son" in 1902 (the beginning of the disease, but to first hospitalization)

At the beginning of 1902 painting "Demon Downcast" was shown to the public at the exhibition "World of Art" in St. Petersburg. Here's what one of the exhibition recalls his wife's sister Vrubel, Katherine Gay, "Mikhail, despite the fact that the picture had been put up every day early in the morning rewrote it, and I was horrified to see change every day. There were days that the "Demon" was very afraid, and then again appeared in facial expression Demon deep sadness and a new beauty ... In general, despite his illness, creativity Vrubel did not leave, even as grown, but have to live with it It was made unbearable. "

"Demon Downcast" 1901-1902 (before the illness began, repeatedly rewrote)

In March 1902 the artist was first placed in a private psychiatric hospital. The clinical picture was dominated by the ideas of grandeur, a period of strong excitation so that for six months broke goodbye even with the closest people - his wife and sister.

"Pan" in 1899 (before the illness)

In September of the same year, Vrubel moved to psychiatric clinic of Serbia, in a coat and hat, even without underwear, as saying that he destroyed all his belongings.

"Swan Princess" in 1900 (before the illness)

In this hospital, it went a lot better, he wrote letters to relatives quite logical, and on the advice of the doctor began to paint again.

"Siren" in 1900 (before the illness)

February 18, 1903 Mikhail Vrubel came out of the hospital, but he was very sad, and completely by April "unstuck": often cried, homesick, said that good for nothing, could not work at all, even though it offers a variety of orders. May 3, 1903 was a misfortune - Savvochka died, the only child of Vrubel. In the face of this grief Mikhail behaved very courageously, personally engaged in the organization of funeral, I tried to support his wife, who was in despair.

"Portrait of Nadezhda Zabela-Vrubel," 1904 (during his illness)

After the funeral, his son Vrubel went to his estate near Kiev, where the artist was very nervous, demanded to be transported to the hospital soon. Someone advised to determine Vrubel in a psychiatric clinic in Riga.

One version of the work "Pearl", pastel, approximately 1904 (during his illness)

At this time, the disease was completely different character from megalomania was gone, on the contrary, it was replaced by a full depression. Vrubel was sad and sad, considered himself worthless and would lose his life.

"Self-Portrait with a sink," in 1905 (during his illness)

In the autumn of his sister, the artist transported from Riga to Moscow. In Moscow hospital, he began to paint portraits of the patients very successful, but his thoughts confused, Vrubel seemed that his wife and sister are also psychiatric patients.

"Water Lilies", 1890 (before the illness)

Pictures taken at the clinic, were presented at the exhibition of Moscow artists, they could not see a shadow of the disease.

"Hamlet and Ophelia", 1884 (before the illness)

During this period Vrubel painted "Six-Winged Seraph", depicting an angel with burning lamps, a very beautiful thing done burning and bright colors.

"Six-Winged Seraph (Azrael)", 1904 (during his illness)

By the spring of 1904, the artist was so bad that the doctors and relatives thought that he would not live up to the summer, wanted to take him abroad, but later left the plans. In the summer the Moscow clinic closed, so Serbian psychiatrist advised to put Vrubel in the newly opened near Moscow psychiatric hospital Usoltseva. Patients in the hospital lived with his family doctor and enjoyed great freedom.

"Touch portrait a doctor Usolsev ", 1904 (in time of illness)

Transfer to hospital Usoltseva brought an amazing advantage: Vrubel began to eat (he indulged in food, believing himself unworthy of food), his mind cleared, he painted, wrote letters to friends and family, and two months later recovered so that he returned home.

Fence psychiatric hospital, this place was Usoltseva clinic.

After being discharged from the hospital the artist Vrubel moved to St. Petersburg, where Mikhail led a life completely healthy person, he rented an apartment, it had electricity, and worked very hard.

"Morning" in 1897 (before the illness)

During this period, Vrubel began to write his wonderful "pearl", which is now in the collection of the Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow.

"Pearl", 1904 (during his illness)

By the beginning of 1905, his wife began to notice in Vrubel very excited, he became intractable, irritable, spend money unreasonably on completely unnecessary things. Wife of the artist had to "write out" from Moscow Usoltseva psychiatrist, who took Vrubel in his Moscow hospital.

"After the concert" (Portrait of the Artist's Wife), 1905 (during his illness)

Usoltsev acted soothingly on the patient. Once at the clinic, Vrubel started to sleep, and insomnia has always been one of the most dangerous symptoms of his illness. The relatives had hoped that this time the disease will not be long, alas, but they were wrong - the excitement once again changed oppression. Despite his illness, Vrubel did not stop working, he painted a portrait of the entire family Usoltseva, many patients and poet Bryusov, who was visiting the artist.

"Portrait of the poet Valery Bryusov" 1906 (during his illness)

Bruce left a very interesting memories of his first meeting with Mikhail Vrubel, held at the clinic Usoltseva: "To tell the truth, I was horrified to see Vrubel. It was frail, sick man in dirty rumpled shirt. He had a reddish face; eyes like a bird of prey; spiky hair instead of a beard. First impression: crazy! After the usual greetings he asked me: "It's you I have to write about?" And he began to treat me in a special way, in artistically intently, almost pathetically. Immediately his expression changed. Through the madness of genius shone through. "


Photo of the poet Bryusov.

When Vrubel wrote Bryusov surrounding began to notice that he is something strange with the eyes, the artist had to be approached very closely to see the model. New suffering approaching at an alarming rate, having finished a portrait Bryusov, Vrubel did not see much of his work.

"Fortune Teller", 1894-1895 (before the illness)

Mikhail Vrubel realized the full horror of his situation: the artist, the world which was incredibly beautiful - now almost blind ... He began to refuse food, saying that if it is starving 10 years, then begin to see clearly, and figure it will have unusually good.

"Six-Winged Seraph" in 1905 (before the illness)

The poor artist friends are now ashamed, he said: "Why should they come, I did not see them."

'Valkyrie (Portrait of Princess Tenisheva) "1899 (before the illness)

The outside world is less contact with Mikhail Vrubel. Despite all the efforts of his sister and wife, who regularly visited the artist, he plunged into a world of their own dreams: telling something like fairy tales, that he would have the eyes of emerald, which he created all of their works during the time of the ancient world and the Renaissance.

"Hansel and Gretel", 1896 (before the illness)

The last year of life, the artist insistently refused meat, saying he did not want to eat "uboiny", so he began to serve vegetarian table. The forces gradually left Vrubel, sometimes he said that he "tired of living".

"Seraphim", 1904-1905 (during his illness)

Sitting in the garden of his last summer, he once said, "The sparrows chirp me - almost alive, almost alive." The general appearance of the patient becomes a subtle, spiritual. Vrubel came to an end with complete peace of mind. When he began pneumonia, transformed then into galloping consumption, he took it in stride. In his last conscious day before the agony, Vrubel carefully brought myself up passionately kissed the hand of his wife and sister, and no longer spoke.


Photo MAVrubel 1897 (before the illness)

Only at night, briefly regained consciousness, the artist said, referring to the man who took care of him, "Nicholas, I have a pretty lie here - go to the Academy." These words had some premonition of dying prophetic: after a day Vrubel in the coffin was solemnly brought to the Academy of Fine Arts - his alma mater.

"Bed" (from the series "Insomnia"), 1903-1904 (during his illness)

Finish the story wants Usoltseva words psychiatrist who, like no other, admired by Mikhail Vrubel, understanding the complexity of his brilliant personality: "We often hear that creativity Vrubel - sore creativity. I have long and carefully studied Vrubel, and I believe that his work is not only perfectly normal, but so powerful and strong that even a terrible disease could not destroy it. Creativity was at the core, the very essence of his psychic personality, and when he reached the end, the disease has destroyed him ... He died grievously sick, but as an artist he was healthy and deep well. "

"Rose in a glass", 1904 (during his illness)

Author: Daria Evseeva

Источник: http://www.adme.ru/tvorchestvo-hudozhniki/poverzhennyj-demon-mihaila-vrubelya-947760/#image16976760 © AdMe.ru

P.S. I am keeping this article for myself because of my love and appreciation  of great artist. I am also asking myself:  how is it possible that greatness of a genius and  mental illness are very often together?

Bougainvillea abstract is featured on Saatchi Art homepage

Posted on June 1, 2015 at 2:35 PM

My  work has been chosen to be featured in the Floral and Plants: Originals for $1000 and Under Collection on Saatchi Art's homepage. You can see the collection here.




Bougainvillea on the wall demo

Posted on May 26, 2015 at 2:25 PM

If you are interested in step-by-step painting demonstrations, please, sign up on my web site and I will send you e-mail about upcoming free demos.

Watch bougainvillea painting demo now:


Posted on July 14, 2014 at 11:20 AM

Yesterday I received a note on Deviant Art:




You have been chosen for an interview at our group, VisualArtistry in our spotlight feature!

Please answer all the questions below. :)


 Please introduce yourself, tell us about yourself and your dA life?


 Where did you begin with your artistic endeavours and What would you say your main artform is?


 When did you start pursuing your art and What inspires you to?


 What do you want to express and what idea or message are you trying to put across in your artwork?


 What are your 'tools of the trade' and how do you create your art?


 What advice would you give to a beginner in any genre?


 Final words?




Co-Founder of VisualArtistry"

Why not? And here it is:

Thank you for this invitation, I am very flattered, and I will try to answer your questions as much as I can.

My name is Julia Utiasheva, I live in Sharpsburg, GA, and ... I love to paint, besides everything else in my life. Painting is a passion and, actually, only a passion. I painted since my childhood but never seriously. By my education, I am an computer engineer, and mathematician, so I wanted a hobby and I wanted to learn. I started about 10 years ago by taking my first art books and signed online for art classes. I never had an actual teacher, only books, observation of my favorite painters and artists and my will to paint.

I don't know what to say about my dA life.

My main art form was usually landscape. In oil, acrylics, and pastels, but I do always only what is interesting for me and only what I LOVE. Now I try to develop my style and working a lot with different painting techniques.

My inspiration is everywhere: I see good artwork and then I try to do my own. Or it can be simply nature. Or good photos. But by the time I learned not to copy them. And it is my main advice for beginners: please, don't do photo copies, look at good artwork first, then use photo as a reference and do your own artwork.

About my message... I paint usually something what I love or something what takes my breath away. I guess that is a reason why people like my paintings sometimes - because I try to express my own feelings and my own feelings are very positive. I am that kind of person which doesn't want to express sadness and negativity. It does not mean that I don't feel it, simply I don't want to express it. I guess my message is: look around and learn to see beauty around you. Be positive!

How I create my art... Usually at home, when I find some inspiration or I have some ideas. I have in mind what I want to achieve in order to make some progress. For example, to paint not very cautious but free. It is not very easy sometimes, it took years for me. Then I think about style, look at style examples, I do my homework first.

Ok, now about my advice to beginners:

After many years I understood that the main critic to me is me. If I am not satisfied, nobody's good words mean anything to me. And opposite: I don't care about negative critiques if I am satisfied myself. So, try to be confident, listen only constructive critiques coming from positive people and... continue to learn.

Another good advice: if you are tired - relax because any good hobby sometimes needs a brake.

I wish you always be creative because in the end it brings you a very good feeling of accomplishment and satisfaction.

Julia Utiasheva. July 13, 2014.