Whatever subject Julia Lesnichy investigates, she often finds herself inspired by fast-changing light and color in nature. She is captivated by the colors she sees depending on the time of the day and season and resorts to oils and pastels to capture these fleeting moments. She often finishes her plein air paintings in her studio in Crozet, which is located in a quiet, rural area in Virginia.
In 1998, Julia began taking private classes in drawing and oil painting in Russia. In 1999, she moved to Charlottesville with her family. While her husband studied law at the University of Virginia, she took classes in pastel and watercolor. In 2001, she was lucky to take a workshop with Lois Griffel, a nationally recognized plein air painter and instructor, who opened up a world of color for Julia. The experience she had during the workshop would forever guide her as a painter.
In 2010, Julia moved to the United States from Moscow, Russia, with the family and settled down in Crozet. Though Julia had taken up pastel as a medium before she returned to it again in 2011, she now realized that she could apply pastels boldly with swift painterly strokes creating layers of colors. Julia received her first award in pastels in 2012, and received twenty more over the following six years in more than 100 competitions, including two honorable mentions in Pastel magazine and selection as a finalist in Artist magazine’s 33rd competition in 2016. She is a member of American Impressionist Society, Pastel Society of America, Midatlantic Pastel Society, Northwestern Pastel Society (Signature member) and Southeastern Pastel Society (Member of Excellence).