Julia Heseltine was born in London in 1938, the daughter of the soldier Guy Heseltine and the portrait and figure painter Anna Zinkeisen. Her aunt was the artist Doris Zinkeisen. Distinction came to her early life, when she was expelled from boarding school aged 14 for being drunk and disorderly. This enabled Julia to get early serious tuition in painting from her mother, whom she assisted with her murals (backgrounds only). Her first commission quickly followed: a mural in the children’s shoe department at Babers in Oxford Street, and a portrait of Jonathan Porritt aged 4 (later of Friends of the Earth fame). She then studied at the Byam Shaw Art School, followed by the Royal Academy Schools. While There she was awarded the Medaille d’Argent at the Paris Salon.
In 1962 she married the sculptor Anthony Weller, with whom she had various joint shows in London and where she established herself as a painter of portraits, murals and works for films and television. Commissions included a lot of work for Sir Lawrence Olivier, and portraits of Joan Plowright, Bamber Gascoigne and Alan Clark M.P.
For about the last 15 years Julia has lived and worked in Suffolk.