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5 Things With Local Artist Julie Umberger

Our latest Five Things has been curated by local collage artist Julie Umberger! She creates cut paper analog collages using discarded magazines and books to create new scenarios from combining old images with bold new ones for a story to come to life. Keep up with her work by following along on her Instagram or Website. She currently has work on display at King Gallery that is viewable by appointment.

Below check out her curated list of selections for this installment of five things!


I love a good gin cocktail, but am intimidated by creating them at home. Discovering the simple gin jam cocktail (thank you tik-tok) has enhanced my hosting confidence. It can be any jam or preserves (not jelly!) and the flavor combinations are endless. Mix cubes of ice, a couple of heaping tablespoons of jam and your choice of gin, vodka or other spirit, then give a good shake in your cocktail shaker or cobbler. Don’t have one? Use the jam jar! Strain into glass and top with flavored seltzer or soda and *chef’s kiss*. I personally find it takes it up a level if you use your coupe glass you found from the thrift store for a dollar. You’re welcome.


I am slightly obsessed with growing things, both indoor plant babies to outdoor flowers. My favorite will always be those that grow easily with little fuss. Introducing kitchen counter microgreens. Available in kale, radish, romaine, salad mixes and so many more depending on your taste preferences. Perfect even for those lacking a green thumb, fill tray with water, place seed packet in tray, place tray on counter, walk away. In 5 to 10 days, I have a tray full ready to consume. Even better, I don’t have to find recipes to use them, I add them to things I’m already eating- smoothies, avocado toast, eggs, pizza, sandwiches, salads, etc. Though they could be mistaken for grass clippings, the pop of green garnish makes a beautiful plate and an easy way to incorporate more vegetables into your dish. There are lots of microgreen kits to get you started including subscriptions that deliver seed packets regularly to you. I personally use Hamama because of their wide variety of microgreen choices and trays.


As an artist myself, there is something special about having patrons that feel connected to you through your artwork. I have become a recent collector of the local artist Jarrod Turner. Recently diving into folk art, his distinct style is raw, bold, and whimsical. From repainted thrifted frames to found object lampshades, any fragment of disregarded lumber or jug is not beyond his reinterpretation. Jarrod’s trademark multiple eyed portraits, devil horns, angel halos and slogan “Folk art brings us together” speaks to my southern-born heart. I adore the approachable manner of conversation his pieces invoke.


Beyond my regular collage work, I enjoy stretching my artist legs into other mediums. Betsy Oh Art’s ceramic workshops hosted by Gloria Mani is an approachably gorgeous time. Betsy’s energetic demeanor is perfect for both the ceramic novice and professional to embrace clay hand building. Her deliciously weird style allows for all interpretations and rewarded with your uniquely crafted artwork. Gloria’s warm gallery is a loving environment to curate this delightful local experience. There’s always another workshop date approaching and they fill up fast! Sign up for the next one by contacting Gloria Mani or Betsy Oh Art.


If the recent years have taught me anything, it’s that distraction is one of my main coping mechanisms. I find the immersive experience one I crave for both diversion and connection. Ben Redding’s The Living Room has me marking my calendar and counting down the days. With the promise of complete captivation by converting King Gallery into a gathering place for passionate performances has me on the edge of my imaginary seat. Ben’s vision to give local artists a platform to share their talents with the public fills my culture-loving spirit with hope that our beautiful city will continue to support and show up for the creatives that we crave. King Gallery has the unique flexibility to transform itself into the vision that it needs to be for an awakening experience. Ranging from music, performance, and visual art, I am already bracing myself for the new talents I’ll witness and the treasured memories I plan to take with me. The full schedule drops Oct. 1 and runs Oct 27-Nov 12. Follow @thelivingroom_howardave and @king_gallery_lifestyle for more information.

Love this series? Whose 5 Things should we feature next?

We'll be choosing artists and locals to curate these all year long. Tell us who you want to hear from!


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