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"If you've ever been to Africa, you are not likely to forget the experience," says wildlife artist Julia Rogers. And if you've never been to Africa, looking at a Rogers painting can make you homesick for places you've never seen. You can almost feel the heat, the sand and the beauty of the landscape. Being an artist and painting nature was inevitable. Growing up on the Chesapeake Bay on the eastern shore of Maryland has had a strong influence on Julia since childhood. Her mother, an artist, and her father, a sportsman and wildlife enthusiast, it s not surprising that she began drawing landscapes and animals at a very young age. She excelled in art in school and was placed in college as a fine art major before graduating High School. She was advised, like most art students, to study and work as a commercial artist. "A decision to leave the security of a regular paycheck to paint full time was not easy but was the best thing I ever did." Over the years she has worked in several mediums and has gradually developed the distinctive style we see today in her oil paintings. She also paints a wide variety of subjects. Her extensive travel is documented in her work. "I ve had many periods of growth that can be attributed to trips I have had taken." Africa has been very inspirational in her work and has become a personal favorite. "Seeing animals in their natural environment and witnessing their interaction in person changed the way I painted." There have been many trips to several countries in Africa. Botswana, Kenya, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, and Namibia. "You can go again and again and never see the same thing. Something amazing happens every trip."