Artist, Designer, Photographer, Author, Illustrator, Speaker, since 1973.
“How could I have known?” is a reoccurring question for me as I have lived my incredible life.
How could I have known that my very happy childhood in a beautiful family would propel me to an excellent college and international travel with the Girl Scouts? That in 1958, my career would get an exciting start, and keep expanding with new challenges, creativity and “aha” moments? That a blind date with a wonderful man would send us on journeys to jungles, deserts, icebergs, cities, and savannahs in more than 100 countries seeking answers to what makes the world “tick”?
That for decades, my life would explode into a huge world of the Arts? That my days would keep expanding with all my “brilliant” (adjective by me) ideas. That enriching friendships would bloom in every corner of the world?
How could I have known that my life would be filled with love, adventure, discovery, creations? And an undying passion for cutting snowflakes, searching for bells, and savoring chocolate! Busily formulating theories that kitchens should be reserved for other people, each day should contain sillies and giggles, and people should come to dinner for the decorations not the food. Oh, and that planting flowers provides fleeting beauty while painting flowers makes them timeless. Finding the best bookends for my days are writing thank you notes, and that I should not be ruled by my hair.
I have learned all these things and so much more by feeling the depth, the anguish, and permanence of other people’s difficulties. I also recognize, with extreme gratitude, the magnificent life I have lived. My hope is that through my art and writing, I can bring joy and beauty and a touch of humor to others.
Watercolors: Experience the textures of animals, the fragility of flowers, the enchantment of children, and the complexity of Julie’s exclusive Kaleidoscopes inspired by people, organizations, schools, and more from Julie’s extensive intensive travels in 101 countries.
Books: You and your youngsters can giggle exploring the Sillybillies. Together, you can look for bells, stars, and ribbons on each Sillybilly character. All five books are whimsical stories of encouragement that feature Julie’s poetry and illustrations:
The Sillybillies, The Sillybillies on the Moon, The Sillybillies go to the Theatre, The Sillybillies Find a Shadow and The Sillybillies Find Stripes and Spots.
Seeing the World through the Heart of its Bells is a coffee table book and a journey for your eyes. Be surprised by the myriad of uses and locations of bells in every country and culture with 500 photos and stories of bells Julie has photographed in 57 countries.
Clothing and Décor: The Julie Dawson Collection features products based on her art and characters. From neckties and scarves to t-shirts and aprons. Tiles and pillowcases to onesies and bibs. Note cards and holiday cards to placemats and pillowcases. Of course, you’ll also find a plethora of fun Sillybillies items.
Designs: Unique digital creations from Julie’s watercolors result in stunning visuals. Unique patterns and stripes repeat, transforming into fanciful, silly “mable critters.” Feel free to inquire about custom designed rooms, clothes, and other products.
She’s used her art and writing to bring happiness and joy to others. She’s created custom products and art for various organizations to use for fundraising efforts – or simply enjoy.
Girl Scouts: Active since she was seven (1944) she's been involved with the Girl Scouts both locally and internationally. Her primary interests focus on teaching girls leadership skills to work to change Hate to Appreciate to Celebrate.
Care House: Julie created murals, watercolors, her kaleidoscope artwork, and a book for this facility that serves children who have been abused and abandoned.
Children's Hospital: To brighten hours spent in the emergency floor of Detroit Children's Hospital, Julie created uplifting art for all the hallways, 22 exam rooms, and a 29-foot mural on one of the walls.
Her book, The Sillybillies Find Stripes and Spots, is featured for the kids and their parents to read.
Indie Award: The Sillybillies Find Stripes and Spots won the 2022 Next Generation Indie Book Award thanks for Illustration – all by Julie. In combining her watercolors of her Sillybillies with her computer creations of African animals and scenery, her fanciful illustrations added gentle fun to this Sillybillies story. With it, children are encouraged to find the joy in knowing others who might be different from them.
Julie’s art can be found in 24 hospitals, and many non-profits nationally, as well as corporate and private collections around the world.
Videos: Sending from Julie’s happy world with upbeat messages.