Sneak Peak Feature Photo

Sneak Peak Feature Photo

Here’s a peak at one of my new pieces of art that I will be featuring today. It’s a photo transfer on canvas combined with acrylics.

Sneak Peak Feature Photo

Creepy Doll Sneak Peak





Come check it out at the Art Show on the beach in Santa Barbara.  It’s on Cabrillo down by Stearn’s Wharf. I will post my location on Instagram once I’m set up! The show runs from 10:00 am until dusk.


After Hours: 1st Thursday

1st Thursday After Hours at The Granada

I try to check out most of the 1st Thursday’s in Santa Barbara.  We are lucky to have so many venues participate and support local artists. This past Thursday was the last After Hours event of the season… Why this does not run year round is a mystery to me.  The Granda Theatre, the Lobero Theatre, and The New Vic are gracious hosts for the After Hours events. The events feature live entertainment, nibbles, & wine tastings.

In honor of their upcoming New Year’s Eve POPS Concert, the symphony busted out their musical instruments and let us try them out! What fun!

Playing a cello at The Granada Theatre on 1st Thursday After Hours

How do I play this thing?


After hours trying instruments at the Granada

Trying out the instruments!












After giving the instruments a whirl, I headed upstairs to the Granada’s Big Screen to catch the sneak peak of the Lightwire Theater. They will be performing at the Granada on December 10th. I wish I was going to be in town to catch the show, because it looked fantastic!

Next was the wine tasting, champagne, and music by guitarist Bryan Titus… All were very good!

Bryan Titus at the Granada Theatre

Guitarist Bryan Titus

And, where there is good music you have dancers!

Dancing at the Granada Theatre 1st Thursday

Celebrating at the Granada Theatre

Breaking Thanksgiving Traditions

Breaking Thanksgiving Traditions & Creating New Ones

It’s been along time since my entire family has been together to celebrate Thanksgiving. Like many families, we are scattered across the country in many different States. Every year I face the difficult decision of where to spend the holiday.

The past several years, I have traveled to Las Vegas where a portion of my family resides. Last year began with a car accident one hour into the trip. I was rear ended on the 101 Freeway. Thankfully, the car wasn’t horribly damaged and I was able to continue on.  The usual six hour ride, however, had turned into a ten hour nightmare!

Still traumatized by the thought of driving in holiday traffic, I decided to stay in Santa Barbara this year. For the first time in my life, Thanksgiving would be spent at a restaurant!

I have one son that lives in Santa Barbara and he booked reservations for us at Harry’s Plaza Cafe. With promises of a traditional Thanksgiving dinner, we arrived for an early afternoon meal.

We started with a drink in the bar… I ordered a Bloody Mary. Whoa! It was stiff! I actually had to ask for more tomato juice and ice!

Harry's Plaza Cafe in Santa Barbara at the bar

Bloody Mary at Harry’s Plaza Cafe















The walls of the restaurant are covered with vintage photographs of Santa Barbara. It’s pretty amazing!

Harry's Santa Barbara history

Santa Barbara history is all over the walls!

Time to eat! Traditional dinner was served. The basics were all there… Lot’s missing, but hey I wasn’t at Mom and Dad’s now was I?

Thanksgiving Dinner at Harry's in Santa Barbara

Thanksgiving Dinner at Harry’s

The food and service were great. We even got a piece of pumpkin pie, which we took home!

I can’t say I would never do this again, however if given the choice, I would choose the good old fashioned family dinner at home. There is nothing like a big Thanksgiving dinner surrounded by your entire family.

I am grateful my son and I were able to celebrate together at Harry’s… It may not have been the traditional Thanksgiving as we have known in the past, but this is how new traditions begin right?



1st Santa Barbara Art Show

1st Art Show on the Beach

The past couple weeks have been insanely busy getting ready for my first art show on the beach in Santa Barbara. I had to figure out what kind of display I wanted to use, and then build it.  Next, I had to cut and sand wood for the photos to be mounted onto.  And, last but not least I had to print the photos and mount them.  This took much more time than I anticipated!  I was still mounting photos at 11:30 pm the night before the show! I finally managed to crawl into bed after midnight.

After lightly caffeinating myself Sunday morning, I headed down to the beach in search of a spot to set up. Show set up starts at 6:00 am… Yes, that’s right, 6:00 in the morning!

I was greeted with a beautiful sunrise as I set up… What a great way to start a day!

Sunrise at the Santa Barbara Art Show

Sunrise at the Art Show


Julie Plevak art Santa Barbara Beach show

All set up and ready to go!

Santa Barbara Art Show on the beach

My first sale! Thanks Matt!

My first show went well! If you are in the Santa Barbara area, be sure to stop by the Arts Show on the Beach! I will be there on most Sunday’s!

Santa Barbara Art Show

Santa Barbara Art Show on the Beach

I just was had my art screening and was accepted! I am happy to announce that I will be joining the Santa Barbara Art Show on the beach. It is every Sunday from 10am until dusk. It’s located from Cabrillo Boulevard, East of Stearns Wharf to Calle Cesar Chavez. Make sure to stop by and see me! I will be posting some sneak peaks of art every week, so check back and see what’s new!
My start date is November 23, 2014! See you then!

Art Screening in Santa Barbara

Art being screened.

Photos waiting to be screened for art show

Waiting for photos to be screened.

Waterfront Town – Morro Bay, CA

Charming Waterfront Town – Morro Bay, CA

We arrived in Morro Bay late afternoon.  After settling into our hotel, we headed down to the waterfront to check out the town.  Morro Bay’s most famous landmark, Morro Rock, welcomes you upon arrival.  It sits between the harbor and the beach, and belongs to a series of ancient volcanic plugs called the Nine Sisters.  They are situated between the cities of Morro Bay and San Luis Obispo.

traveling in Morro Bay, Morro Rock, California Travel

Morro Rock – One of the Nine Sisters

After seeing all the boats out on the bay, we decided we needed to be on one!  We had heard about a Tiki Boat Booze Cruise and went searching for it.

Tiki boat cruise on Morro Bay, Travel in California

We found it!

If you have a chance to ride on the tiki boat, do it! The price can’t be beat, plus it’s a great way to see the Bay, learn some local history, and of course be entertained. This boat has a bar on board, and the Captain mixes your drinks. I recommend the Leaky Tiki! Yum! Once you have your drink in hand, your tour begins with the Captain playing the theme song from Gilligan’s Island! I’m not kidding… I did say it was entertaining!

Travel in Morro Bay Harbor, California

Touring Morro Bay Harbor

After our cruise we were ready for dinner. The Embarcadero is lined with shops and restaurants, so we asked the captain for a recommendation. We were looking for good food, drinks, and more entertainment. The Captain recommended the Otter Rock Café. It did not disappoint! The food and drinks were great, and the entertainment fantastic! We were lucky enough to catch the Phil Friendly Trio. They are a rockabilly band from Los Angeles that frequently plays in the area. Check them out the next time they’re in Morro Bay… Just make sure you have on your dancing shoes!

A Seaside Village – Cambria, CA

Cambria, CA… Here we come!

I picked up my friend and fellow photographer Jenna Dosch in downtown Los Angeles.  She had just taken the bus in from Las Vegas, and we were more than ready to be on our way to Cambria!  We had a 222 mile road trip ahead of us, and expected to arrive early evening just in time for a nice dinner and some wine.  That was the plan anyway… Instead, we ended up severely stuck in LA traffic for hours!  Our new ETA was 9:00 pm!

We called our hotel to let them know we were running late, and were told to get something to eat along the way if we weren’t going to make it by 9:00.  We should have listened… Cambria is not a late night party town!  We arrived just as all the restaurants were shutting down!

We checked into the FogCatcher Inn which is right on the coast, across from Moonstone Beach.  It’s a perfect place for a weekend getaway, and the location can’t be beat.  The rooms are cozy, and equipped with fireplaces for chillier nights.

Cambria, CA FogCatcher Inn, Travel in California

Beautiful Gardens at FogCatcher Inn

Still determined to find something that was open, we headed into the Village.  The downtown area was adorable, but pretty much shut down too.  We finally came across the Cambria Pines Lodge, which was not only open, but had live music as well! We went inside to the Fireside Lounge and found a very lively crowd and wine. Finally! Success!

The next morning we headed down to Moonstone Beach. We were in Cambria to photograph California Coastal Clean-Up Day along CA’s Highway 1 Discovery Route, and wanted to get some photos before the volunteers starting showing up.

Moonstone Beach, Cambria, CA Coast

Morning on Moonstone Beach

Cambria, CA, Travel in California, Moonstone Beach

Moonstone Beach Morning

Travel in California, Cambri Coastline

Cambria, CA Coastline

Moonstone Beach is such a lovely, serene beach. The coastline is absolutely gorgeous with all the cliffs and pine trees. Make sure to look for the shiny Moonstones while strolling on the beach. They are the very reason why the beach is called Moonstone.

If you like fishing and solitude, you will find it here. The uncrowded beach is a fisherman’s dream. I only counted three all morning.

Ocean Fishing on Moonstone Beach in California

Fishing on Moonstone Beach

If surfing’s your thing, you’ll appreciate this area too! The waves were good and there weren’t any crowds to speak of!

surfing Moonstone Beach

Checking out the waves

Surf Moonstone Beach, travel in California, Weekend Getaway

Found his wave!

If you’ve ever been out on a surfboard in the ocean, you know what a zen-like experience it is while you wait for the next wave. There’s nothing quite like it, and something I think everyone should try at least once in their lifetime.

Zen and surfing, Travel California, Cambria

Surfer Zen!

Surfing the Cambria Coast

Surfing the Cambria Coast

Coastal Clean-Up Time!
Coastal Clean-Up Day is held annually, and is one of the state’s largest volunteer events. The Volunteers will be collecting over 700,000 pounds of trash! That’s right… 700,000 pounds of trash! So, think about that the next time you are visiting your favorite beach or enjoying yourself while vacationing. You would be surprised to see what people leave behind!

I appreciate all the volunteers that came out for this event! They are an amazing bunch of people who really care about our beautiful coastline. If you would like to participate in
eco-tourism while vacationing along CA’s Highway 1 Discovery Route check out some Stewardship Travel opportunities. You can make a difference to the environment while you explore some wonderful nature preserves.

Cleaning up the coast of California, Eco Tourism, Cambria

The Volunteers have arrived!

Cleaning up the coast of Cambria, CA, Volunteer for Coastal Clean-Up Day, Eco Tourism

Volunteer for Coastal Clean-Up Day

Trash on the beach, Coastal Clean-Up Day, Eco Tourism in Cambria, CA

The trash left behind!

children participate in eco tourism in Cambria, CA

Young Travel Stewards on top of the world!

Solitary Angel – New Lensbaby Art

Lensbaby Art – Solitary Angel

This is the latest addition to an ongoing lensbaby art and photography project I have been working on.  It was shot while traveling in New Orleans. I used my lensbaby, brought it into photoshop and played a bit!  It will be available for purchase in the Gallery Store soon!

art in new orleans, lensbaby project, Julie Plevak, Artist, Lensbaby Art

Lensbaby Art – Solitary Angel

Funk Zone Time!

2nd Saturday Art Walk – Funk Zone

If you’re in Santa Barbara on the Second Saturday of the month, make sure to find your way to the Funk Zone.  Every month over 20 artists open their studios and galleries to the public from 1-5 pm.  Many venues in the Funk Zone feature live music, and there are plenty of wineries to check out too!

Start early if you want to see them all!

My first stop was The Arts Fund Gallery.  They featured multiple artists inside, as well as outside.  They also had live music, a food truck and free tastings from Jun Brewery.

Funk Zone Tasting, Jun Brewery, Santa Barbara

Jun Brewery Tasting

This is not beer my friends! It is a craft fermented probiotic drink. It’s brewed with Raw Organic Honey and Jasmine. It does have a light alcohol content, so if you’re a lightweight, watch out… Kidding! Joking aside, it was a tasty alternative drink, and quite refreshing on a hot day. And, I’m pretty sure it’s good for you too! You can schedule a tasting by going on their website.

Next I stopped was over to check out the art of Stafford Taylor. I absolutely love his art and will provide a link to his website soon.

The artwork of Stafford Taylor, funk zone, Santa Barbara, CA

Stafford Taylor and His Art

Santa Barbara Art Foundry & Gallery was next on the list. This place is super cool. It is an actual working bronze foundry, which you are able to tour. The art is an eclectic mix. You can find metal and glass sculptures, paintings, photography, and more. Don’t forget to stop by the wine bar to try some local Fox Wine!

Santa Barbara Art Foundry & Gallery, Funk Zone, Santa Barbara Day Trip

Santa Barbara Art Foundry & Gallery

As I was walking to the next studio, I came across a truck parked on Yanonali Street & Santa Barbara St. At first, I thought it was some sort of food truck. I decided to investigate, and was surprised to find handcrafted treasures from local artisans and designers inside. How fabulous… Mobile Art! You can find The Habitat Factory in the Funk Zone on 2nd Saturdays or check out their website for more info.

2nd Saturday, Santa Barabara, Art, The Habitat Factory

The Habitat Factory

I should have started earlier! I was running out of time, and hadn’t even been to half of the studios! I managed to squeeze one more in before it all ended. I was drawn in by a pair of cowboy boots that had been converted to roller skates. There they sat promising more of the unexpected inside. In I walked to find the sculpture and assemblage art of Dan Levin. He refers to his art as Objects Of Curiosity, and that they are! Finished pieces coexist among a fascinating array of random objects.

Santa Barbara, art, Dan Levin

Dan Levin’s Art

Last but not least, I headed over to Seven. A girl’s got to eat… and ok have a beer too! They also are a part of 2nd Saturday, so I figured I could see some art as well.
The Pulled Pork Sliders, Parmesan Truffle Fries and a beer were the perfect way to end the Art Walk!

Seven in Santa Barbara, Art, Food

Outside at Seven