Cudjoe Key is dear to my heart, as well as the rest of the keys. But this area, the Lower Keys is mine to call home. My love for the people helped me create this piece. Just a way to thank this community as well as Big Pine Key Academy. In the future I shall hope to do more .
Energetic and free-spirited, Julie Smiley is a painter with a positive outlook on life which serves as the foundation of her unique brand of art. Her body of work features lush tableaux of flowers in bloom, sinewy figures, serene landscapes, and curious abstract portraits. Her approach is decidedly impressionist with distinctive strokes of paint infusing each image with a vitality and spirit. Smiley displays a passion for color, using a distinctive palette that relies heavily on pastels accented by deep hues of violet and indigo. The emotional effect is quite palpable, one can feel the positivity radiating off the painting. “I caress onto canvas what I feel in my heart,” she explains. “Color excites me; therefore, I create what’s in my ‘Mind’s Eye.’”
With her youth spent exploring the natural surroundings around her childhood home in Iowa, Smiley learned to tap into the beautiful, all-encompassing energy of nature. In her creative life she explores this pure energy on her own terms. Smiley has exhibited her paintings frequently since 1978. She currently resides on Summerland Key, Florida.