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John Votel - Murals and Beds & Accessories
John Votel
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John Votel

Jacksonville, FL

John began his art adventure as a muralist in Southern California in 1972. Over 35 years of experience with paint, products, textures, and techniques has made John well known in artists circles. Talented artist, sculptor and figure finisher. His experiences include employment at Walt Disney World for nearly 20 years with job titles of Signwriter, Prepitory Artist (Ride Exhibit Artist), Figure Finisher, Planner/Estimator, and Superintendent of the Mill (Carpenter Shop) and Sign and Pictorial Shop. The Mill Shop became Department of the Year in 1996 in the Central Shops under John's supervision.

His Disney art experience included sculpting the 'Spitting Camels' float for the Alladin Parade, feathering and attaching animal and 'dinosaur skins' and painting prop pieces for Magic Kingdom's Jungle Cruise, Epcot Center, MGM Studios, Big Thunder Mountain and Typhoon Lagoon. These props were many of the familiar seen pieces like the giant grouper, sea turtles and crabs in the 2000 Leagues Under the Sea ride; Dinosaurs in Epcot's Universe of Energy, the sets of American Adventure; all the scenes in Spaceship Earth (the big 'ball' at Epcot); scenes in It's a Small World and the Land Pavilion. John was the planner over what started as Mickey's Birthdayland... and later became Mickey's Starland... and later Duckburg USA.

John's expertise also includes lead scenic artist for over 7 years at Vero Beach, Florida's Riverside Theatre, project manager for Architectural Signs and Graphics in Orlando, Florida; and interior artist for Orlando Florida's Church Street Ventures (for Antigua Nightclub, Chillers, Big Belly Brewery, and Latitudes). Nearly all Church Street Venture's artistic interior and exterior faux and paintings, most wood carved and large fiberglass props and signs were created by John.

St. Cloud, Florida was the city John has considered his 'Home Town'. John's 4 children were raised there. John painted numerous murals throughout the Central Florida area. Last year, John returned at the request of St. Cloud's Main Street program to paint several murals for the city. John has painted numerous murals for Jacksonville based Firehouse Subs. Over 40 of these murals are found across the United States.

John has recently worked at Universal Studio's newest themed ride 'Disaster Studios'. He painted the large 'Meteor Mural wall (app. 25' x 40') and all the 3D exterior set props in the queue line. John resides and paints in Florida's North County areas.