The purple Picasso


Junior Julian Gregory, the “purple Picasso

Elder High School is known for its athletics and academics, but another one of Elder’s jewels is its art. Just about every grade has its share of talented artists who use their skills to make visual masterpieces. In the class of 2015, junior Julian Gregory, the “Purple Picasso”, is in a league of his own. Many students have seen his T-shirt design for the Elder Walk for Others, but his talents go deeper than that. To discover how deep Mr. Gregory’s talents go, Julian agreed to an interview.

“Julian, how long have you been interested in art?”

“I have been interested in art ever since I could remember. My brother and I would always draw, even before we were in school. “

“What spurred you interest in art?”

“I remember watching Saturday morning cartoons and seeing the animation and artwork. I always wanted to replicate the drawings exactly how they are. I would sit for hours trying to get every detail to make my art look like theirs.”

“What types of things do you like drawing or painting the most?”

“I like drawing and painting pieces that are highly conceptual. One subject matter that I use to guide my artwork is cultural influences such as Chinese, Japanese, Aztec, Mayan, and old American. I also enjoy doing futuristic conceptual pieces.”

“Do you make many sculptures?”

“I have made one sculpture in my sculpture class of my guitar made out of wire and cardboard.”

“So then how would you describe your style? What features are present in all your pieces?”

“My style of art varies in range depending on the type of media. When I am drawing I like to use strong variation of line weight in some pieces especially when they are culturally inspired. When I am doing a digital painting I like to have a futuristic look that has abstract forms for the landscape.”


One of Julian's future- styled digital paintings
One of Julian’s future- styled digital paintings

 “What type of projects do you enjoy the most then?”

“I generally enjoy projects with a lot of freedom. During the summer I was employed by ArtWorks to work on a project painting a mural downtown on the Rookwood Pottery building. At ArtWorks I was a part of a team of eleven consisting of one project manager (who designed the mural), two teaching artists, and eight apprentices.”

“Which do you prefer? Paint, pencils, markers, oil pastels, etc.”

“I prefer to use sharpies for pieces that I do in my sketchbook. I am really interested in digital painting lately because I bought a pen tablet that uses pen pressure so I can replicate brush strokes. I also enjoy painting, but that was a recent change of heart because after years of disliking it I saw that painting is completely different than drawing.”

“What piece are you most proud of?”

“I would say that I am most proud of my designing of an ArtWorks logo because it won a gold key in Scholastic’s Art competition. In addition, I think it was one of my most professional pieces.”

Julian's ArtWorks logo
Julian’s ArtWorks logo

“Do you want to make art a career? If not, what would be your career ambition?”“I don’t think I will be directly pursuing a career in the arts, but I will not be completely detached from the arts.”
Julian has plans “to become an aerospace engineer and eventually design planes, aircraft, or spacecraft”.

“Who are some of your favorite artists? What artists inspire you?”

“Some of my favorite artists are Scott Robertson, Theo Prins, Bansky, Michelangelo, and Leonardo da Vinci.

“So then what are some of your favorite pieces by other artists?”

“I consider movies’ works of art, and right now, movies like Oblivion, StarTrek, and Cloud Atlas are inspiring me. In Oblivion there is a spacecraft known as the bubble ship that they made a full size model of and it was really beautiful. It was like if Apple made a helicopter.”

“Thanks Julian, it’s interesting to dig into your inspiration and techniques. I’m certainly looking forward to your next pieces and they’ll surely please others too.”