UPDATE:  My 4.0 Women’s Tennis Team won Sectionals and is playing at the USTA League National Championships! Join us this weekend at Reffkin Tennis Center October 17th and 18th in our hometown – Tucson, Arizona!

Tucson Tennis team at USTA National Championships
Tucson’s 4.0 Women’s League, The High Fives!


Two passions of mine have always been tennis and art.

Drawing and creating art is similar to playing singles. In tennis it’s me and the ball. Yeah, the other person hits it, but I know I can control it. My strategy is to make my opponent run more than I have to. Not being lazy or anything, but this is how I win matches.

Playing singles for Union Endicott High School - 1997
Playing singles for Union-Endicott High School – 1997

Creating art is very purposeful too. For me it’s me controlling acrylic paints with my brush. Having them do exactly what I want. When I don’t like the outcome, I take control and modify.

With both tennis and art you can get into a wonderful rhythm. Playing tennis creates a wonderful sound of the ball going back and forth. When I’m in the zone, time passes and I can do no wrong. With painting, I can also zone out. Three hours fly by and I realize I haven’t taken a break.

I found some old artwork that features tennis!

My Dad’s tennis friend, Jim Dewan, is an artist in New York. One day I got this awesome watercolor card in the mail. The front said, “WOW!” The inside was this illustration by Jim…

Jim Dewan created and gave me this card after a big match that I won!
Jim Dewan created and gave me this card after a big match that I won!

I was so excited to get a card like this. Jim used his artistic skills to congratulate me on my big singles win at Union-Endicott High School.

A few years later, I graduated from high school and decided to illustrate my passion for art and tennis on my homemade graduation announcement.

High school graduation announcement by Julie Rustad
I drew and photocopied my high school graduation announcement. Good old 1997.

I’m always going to be playing tennis and painting. Tennis is one of those sports that grows with you. My parents friends in their 70s still play doubles. I want to be just like that!

For now, I’ll continue to play weekly in my 4.0 Women’s League and create more art!

I still play tennis today. I'm in a Womens League in Tucson, AZ
What sport or passion do you think you’ll always be doing?

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