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The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

Julie Crumb: Artist finds inspiration living in the present, looking to the future


Forms of art, particularly 3D art and sculpture, motivate Julie Crumb to express more of herself. Ryan Middleton | Staff Photographer | [email protected]

Julie Crumb: Artist finds inspiration living in the present, looking to the future.

Jenna Conrad

Guest Writer


The sun is setting, the air crisp and cool. The intoxicating aroma of coffee welcomes a young crowd to Insight Coffee as people socialize into Sunday evening. In walks a young woman, dark clothing and short in stature, but confident and purposeful in her stride. Her blank canvas is accessorized with red-framed glass and unique earrings that outline the face of a woman. It foreshadows the woman that she is, unique yet subtle.

She sits down on the other side of the table, friendly and eager to share about herself, the young 21-year-old student and art lover, Julie Crumb.

Crumb claims herself an artist, nothing more, nothing less, a title she holds in the present, a title she wants to pursue in the future. She uses the word “artist” to shape her life. She is a woman who aspires to live in the moment but wants to create a successful future for herself.

Crumb continues to build upon herself as she studies studio art, with an emphasis in contemporary sculpture at City College. School has been challenging for her. Not education itself, but more along the lines of staying motivated and focused.

“I took time off last semester, and I had to consciously make that decision to get a grip on life and get back on track to who I wanted to become,” Crumb says.

Leading up to this break, Crumb described the unfortunate series of events in her life. She felt unhappy and unsatisfied, and she knew life wouldn’t change if she didn’t face her problems head-on. She decided to go back to college, more because it would’ve been a loss of money without finishing her degree.

“It does make me feel better about myself,” Crumb expresses. “I don’t feel as focused as when I once started, but I now have drive and a reason.”

Art is the outlet she turns to, as well as her driving force, to complete her education.  

While she explains her art, sharing about the pieces she has created, her face lights up. Her mannerisms get lighter, her words flow with a sense of significance. Crumb creates art for herself, she proclaims.
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“Julie’s art is an integral part of who she is,” says Emily Rosengarth, a close friend. “It’s hard to talk about it as if Julie is a separate entity from her art. She is fully emerged and it pours out of her, from her toes all the way to her quirky earrings.”

Those emotions that flow out of her and into her creations are deep and personal. Her personal preference in the moment is 3D art and sculpture, something she is newly exploring. The more abstract her art is the more emotion she is able to portray.

“It is like relating to someone that you don’t know,” Crumb says. “That is what is the most intriguing and interesting to me.”

Crumb says this as she continues to describe the comfort she finds within. The emotions that she has felt, the times she has struggled through, the places she has been within her head, they can all be expressed aloud. Her power is the voice that she uses within her art.

“Her determination, it drives her, and it shows through her process from concept to finish,” says Denise Benitez-Gonzalez, a fellow student and mentor. “She essentially puts herself into every piece she creates. Her pieces tend to have an emotional component as well. They are raw and honest, and I believe that it gives strength to her pieces overall.”

Crumb has come to a place of self-expression in art overtime. Just like anyone else, she has taken time to grow and find her niche. She came into college knowing that she wanted art as an aspect of her studies. Her parents, however, wanted to make sure she would be realistic about her career. Her culture as an immigrant from the Philippines informs many of her family’s decision.

“I came here at 9 and had to learn how to be a kid in America,” Crumb says.

While she openly talks about her past, she discusses her experiences of making a huge change when coming to America. Coming from one culture of practicality to another of dream-chasing was a wake-up call for her. She grew into her shoes, found her place and sense of childhood, followed by her love for drawing. Little did she know that it would be what she pursues as her career.

Her career at City College has impacted her expansion of artistry, knowledge of the field and networking. She tells about a piece called “The Pedal Theory” that was featured at the downtown Crocker Museum and an installation named “The School of Books” that is hanging in the City College library.

The emotions, the knowledge, the understanding. Art is universal to all. Crumb captures that, she feeds into that, she takes advantage of that. She dreams of being a gallery curator one day. She walks through life, filled with drive and a beautiful passion for artistry.


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