Hassle’s Black Market is this Sunday 12/10. Be sure to come by and check out Julia’s work with Over It Studios!!!
Etsy shop: https://www.etsy.com/
C: A lot of your work touches on feminism and other social justice concepts. How do you use illustration as a tool to communicate messages you find important? Do your opinions on certain issues guide how you choose to make?
J: My experiences and feelings absolutely guide what I make both in with my products and illustration work. With most of my work, it’s not necessarily my intention to spread a particular message, it’s more an expression of how I really feel. Genuinely I am pretty blunt and unfiltered, fairly vulgar, and pissed off and frustrated at all the messed up and unfair things that I see effect my life and others – especially recently (as we all know). Naturally at some point, my point of view is bound to come out in my work!
C: I see a lot of aspects of my own life in your artwork and objects, I’m sure a lot of people feel similarly. Are you making works to be personally relatable to your audience? It is as if interacting with your stuff is like having a conversation in which we are finding out all the things we have in common.
J: I’m happy to hear that my work hits home with people! Like I said, my work is mostly inspired by my own real feels and experiences, so it’s not necessarily my intention to “be relatable” – it’s just a visual expression of how I honestly feel because I don’t know how to make artwork any other way. I’m really glad to be able to connect with people through artwork and I’m glad people can find satisfaction in it too.
C: Have any haters? Tell us about some crazy criticism you’ve received. Have you ever overheard any kind of off-hand comments at the market? Sometimes its hard to detach ourselves from our craft.
J: I think the most criticism I’ve received so far is on a painting I made this summer called Code Red where it shows three women menstruating through their panties. I made it for Fem Project (@femproject) which is a non-profit working to provide menstruation supplies to the homeless and destigmatize menstruation in general. I also later had it in an exhibit for Nasty Women Boston (@nastywomenboston). Both times each organization posted the image on Instagram it received criticism for the imagery being “slightly over the top” or general flack from conservative folk. Beyond that, I’ve upset some people by using “the c-word” in some of my work, I’ve been asked to censor my table display, and one time an older woman did the sign of the cross in front of my table and walked away. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ I just like to think I have her blessing haha. I totally get where these people are coming from, and they certainly don’t have to like it! I think artwork is successful when it makes people feel, even if it’s negative toward me! I’m just going to continue to speak my truth and let the chips fall where they may.