Who are you?

I am Julia Rymer, a visual artist and co-founder of artboss.

What do you do?

I create abstract paintings and prints inspired by science, nature, and color theory. I also am a partner in artboss, a workshop that empowers creatives and makers to build their businesses.

What’s a typical day in the life of you look like? How do you organize your day?

A “typical” day can vary quite a bit. I break my days up into my main responsibilities of parenting, running my business, making art, and self-care as needed.

Mornings are a mad dash to get everyone up, fed, dressed, and to school or daycare. On days my son (23 months) is in daycare, I try to put in a few solid hours of painting, but even on days he is home with me, I still aim get some painting in, even if it is something small. It helps root me.

I spend a few hours a day on art business work, which includes maintaining social media accounts; writing my e-newsletter or blog posts; corresponding with clients, galleries, art consultants, or designers; accounting; updating my website or taking photos of completed work; and anything else that needs addressing.

Afternoons and evenings are comprised of school pick-up, exercise, activities, dinner, homework, and bedtime, after which I usually curl up in my bed with a cup of tea and watch something Jane Austen-y.

What are some of your struggles?

I like to joke that I am a full-time mom and a full-time artist, but it isn’t really a joke- that’s how I feel! Balancing art and motherhood is a process, and I never quite feel like I have it “right.” Also, like many creatives I know, I struggle with the art itself- shaping it, coaxing it into a place of balance and beauty, keeping it consistent but interesting. And I am always trying to figure out and create new opportunities for my work, whether it is sales or exhibitions or networking.

What are some of your goals?

As an artist, my goal is to keep challenging myself artistically, and to literally “go bigger” and work on larger paintings. I want my work to have the same visual intensity, weight and sophistication as Joan Mitchell’s. It is a big goal but I want to be a master painter.

As for art business goals, I have a really busy year ahead. I spent all of last year putting into place opportunities for myself in the form of new gallery representation and art exhibitions; I want these endeavors to succeed. To achieve this, I focus on making very strong artwork, developing a compelling marketing strategy, and working closely with the galleries and curators to build momentum and interest in my work and drive sales. My goal is to double my sales from last year.

I am also very excited about artboss. I want to share what I have learned as a creative entrepreneur and help guide my fellow creatives and makers through their own entrepreneurial journeys.

What do you do to relax and wind down?

Yoga is top of the list. I am pulled in 15 directions at all times, so focusing for one hour in a class really helps my body and mind. I also get weekly acupuncture treatments for stress-reduction. I listen to astronomy and science podcasts before I go to bed. And I watch a lot of very stupid movies with my husband- the dumber the better.

If you could give your 18-year old self advice, what would you say?

When I was 18, I built a life plan for myself that was so specific, there was no room for error- I set myself up for failure. I would tell her to get more creative with what it means to be “successful”- that the one definition she gave herself was like a prison.

When I look back on my life now, I also see that the things I scoffed at and made fun of at 18, were things that 10, 15, 20 years later I was doing. Keep an open mind, I would say. Don’t make fun of or denigrate any path you might take. You are living the life of the Experimental Innovator, and it is a long and labrynthine road, honey!