Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Hi everybody!

Welcome to Hard Curves. If you're familiar with my work as a fantasy artist, you may have seen the blog that I share with my husband and artistic partner, Boris Vallejo, Paint and Brush, where we open up our studio to you to give you a bit of what's going on behind our easels and in our lives.
This blog is dedicated to another side of who I am.
As a 50-year-old former nationally-ranked competitive bodybuilder who has also studied yoga, gymnastics, ballet and modern dance, I've spent countless hours of my life thinking and learning about exercise, fitness, and nutrition.
As an artist, my way of mentally processing all of this information takes a turn into a different dimension. My mind works in a very visual, non-linear way and this has really helped me with fitness--not only with creative approaches to technique, but also just to keep it interesting.
Fitness, bodybuilding, and the human physique play a very important part in my paintings as well, so it all comes full circle. I'll be exploring these ideas and a bunch more in this blog.
I want to share with you how much fun it is to keep health and fitness in your life!


  1. Yay! The blog is up! What a fun banner too; man, I'd like to look that good at 50...heck, who am I kidding? I would have liked to have looked that good at 20!

    Times being what they are, I know a lot of people (especially artists-myself included) who are all really struggling with energy levels and mood right now. Change of seasons, change of jobs, no job, etc...all sorts of factors contribute to the same symptoms of stress, fatigue, and the "blues". The Standard American Diet (SAD) sure doesn't improve things either! You are certainly one of the most energetic, cheerful, positive and productive people I know; so what first steps can we take to get a little of that Julie Bell mojo going in our own lives?

    Congrats on taking the plunge! Jeremy Elder had a good thought there. :-)

  2. I'll use this blog to make sure i get back to it!
    I took some time off from marathon training when i decided i needed the second job of getting back into illustration. with tri season and marathon training coming up its a great idea to continue to make it a part of the artist life.

    we should organize a pre-breakfast run group for the master class.

  3. Yay to you guys, too! Thanks for coming by! This is going to be fun. And we should definitely do some running at the Illustration Master Class!

  4. Hey Julie, I used to hit the gym pretty often for a number of years due to a number of things. I was always pretty lean and needed to workout hard to gain weight. Then I came down with an arthritic condition at 25 and was relagated to swimming laps at the gym's 3/4 olympic size pool they had. It got too bad to workout and I couldn't even do yoga (due to too much pain in my hands, darn raven pose). It was even hard to draw, but I have been on a good recovery road and am back to 95%, so maybe I can use your new blog here to get motivated to get back into the health mode! Maybe the group can get some up and down dogs in before the runs in June. :u)

  5. What perfect timing! I just started a couch to 5k running program. It'll be great to get some extra fitness and nutrition tips.

  6. Mark, I'm going to strongly recommend that you read a book called "The MindBody Prescription" by Dr. John Sarno. And when you finish reading it, read it again! I'll definitely say more about Dr. Sarno in later posts, but his books have helped both me and Boris enormously!

  7. Julie,
    This is an awesome idea, this blog you have here. I'll most likely be visiting frequently to hear what advice or health tips you have to offer. Thanks in advance for taking the time to share all this information with us!


  8. I've been known to throw a dumbell around every now and again. :-) This will definitely be a regular stop for me! Great idea, Julie!

  9. It's great to know that you'll be stopping by, Eric! And Joe, knowing you'll be checking in will keep me on my toes when I'm talking about weight training!

  10. I've only just stumbled upon this blog this past weekend as I was leisurely researching Boris' work. I know this is a wonderful idea and Im very excited about this blog. My only regret is not having discovered it sooner as I see you're already a few years into it and I am also an artist who shares your interest in the human body. I also have recently rejoined the gym after a long hiatus of a few years. I will definitely be catching up on all your posts as Im sure its filled with great and valuable information. I know this will help to keep me motivated. Thanks Julie