After attending the St. Louis School of fine Arts on a MacMillon Scholarship, Judith Deim established a studio in Monterey in 1940 with her husband, painter Ellwood Graham. She painted murals in the Salinas Children’s Hospital and also for the Treasury Department in Washington D.C. She exhibited widely under the name Barbara Stevenson, and in 1950 began showing under her given name, Judith Deim.
In 1941, Deim painted the portrait of John Steinbeck writing his first draft of The Sea of Cortez at her studio. Subsequently Steinbeck provided funds to Deim and her husband for a painting trip to Mexico (Taxco and Patzcuaro).
Deim’s work has been featured in San Francisco at the Museum of Modern Art and the California Palace of the Legion of Honor; at numerous galleries in New York and Los Angeles; and at museums and galleries in Madrid, Amsterdam, Tangier, Dakar, San Miguel de Allende and Santa Fe. In 1946 she was the first artist to have a one-man show at the Carmel Art Association.