"This artistic life - which we know is not the truth - seems to me so vivid, that it would be ungrateful not to be satisfied with it. Your profession is to do what you are made for and exercise with such passion and intensity that it is like responding to a spiritual call. "
Vincent Van Gogh
AN ARTIST AT HEART
I am a french professional Fine Artist and I live in Paris. I was born in Angoulême, in 1970. I wish I could die young... as late as possible !
I have always had a passion for colors and tried to use them as words to communicate. I started painting at the age of 7.
Strangely, it is the french - and later english - romantic poetry, which drove me to drawing and painting and enhanced my passion for colours: Charles Baudelaire, Théodore de Banville, Alphonse de Lamartine, Victor Hugo, John Keats, William Blake and other poets from the second part of the 19th century...
Indeed, the symbolic association of words and colours in their clever use of metaphors, circumlocutions and other surrealistic images, fascinated me.
Especially everyday expressions and idioms such as : to do something "once in a blue moon", to come "out of the blue", to show "one's true colours", "to feel blue", to be "in the pink", to be "black and blue", to have a "blackhead", to tell "white lies", to have a "yellow streak", to be "green with envy", to "paint the town red", to use one's "grey matter", to be "yellow-bellied", to be "caught red-handed", and so on...
"Nature is a temple in which living pillars
Sometimes give voice to confused words;
Man passes there through forests of symbols
Which look at him with understanding eyes.
Like prolonged echoes mingling in the distance
In a deep and tenebrous unity,
Vast as the dark of night and as the light of day,
Perfumes, sounds, and colors correspond."
Correspondences, The Flowers of Evil (1861)
Translation : © William Aggeler
At first, inspiration drawn from such expressions drove me to write poetry.
Then it went on to feed my imagination, and convinced me that painting, which allows the use of the widest possible choice of colours and shades, is not only an art form, but beyond this a language in itself!
Granted, a language without a voice, but unencumbered by the limitations of that voice - an art form which gave me complete freedom of expression.
TO BE AN ARTIST IS NOT A PROFESSION
At the age of seven I had three passions:
- painting and illustrating my copybooks;
- making clothes for my "Barbie" dolls by (Oops ) cutting mummy's beautiful veil and lace curtains;
- write poems.
Although I have always dreamed of becoming an Artist (Painter, "Grand-Couturier" or Novellist), my parents preferred me to study at a high school, in order to have a job allowing me to be financially independent and to be able to freely exercise my artistic passions.
In hindsight, I will never thank them enough for making this wise and sensible choice for me.
Letters, modern languages ... fashion and painting
1989: After obtaining a Literary A Level (Letters and Modern Languages), I passed the entrance examination to study languages at the Catholic University of the West (UCO) in Angers.
While I was working hard to pass my degree, I've also painted and drew every evening, every weekend, during the holidays... every time I could! During that period, I've drawn more than 2,000 sketches and painted about fifty figurative paintings related to the world of fashion. Then I started making my own chlothes and accessories (more than 250) and organized about twenty fashion shows of my colections >>> Read the page "Fashion and Decoration Drawings" >>> Read my press review.
1994: After four years at the Institute for Advanced Language Proficiency (IPLV), I obtained my Master's degree in English. Then I prepared the English Aggregation and the entrance examination to study Communication and Journalism in Paris.
In order to earn my living I took a part-time job as a supervisor in a private high school, as it was the only paid job offering me the opportunity to study at the same time. I also gave english lessons for primary school children and gave support english lessons to high school students.
Having been admitted to the IICP when I was just finishing the writings of the Aggregation, I made the conscious choice to stop the examination in order study global communication and marketing. I settled in Paris.
Communication, Marketing, Digital ... and painting
1997: After being gratuated both in "Global Communication" and "Public Relations", I did my internship at the Press Department at LOUIS FÉRAUD HAUTE COUTURE (Paris 8).
I lived there six of the most beautiful months of my life! Besides the fact that Louis Féraud was a very talented Grand Couturier, he was also a Painter of genius as well as a discreet, benevolent man of great intelligence and kindness. I was feeling as if I was finally approaching one of my dreams: to become a Grand-Couturier or at least a Stylist! I participated in the organization and promotion of haute couture and ready-to-wear fashion shows, took part in the launch of international products (including a perfume and a ready-to-wear line), translated the trends books... Every midday, I used to walk along the rue du Faubourg St Honoré where I fancied I would run my own fashion house some day!
One Friday night, the Director of Collections, to whom I had once shown my fashion sketches to know her opinion and get career advice, summoned me to her office. The appointed Stylist had just fallen ill and was arrested for more than 15 days. In order to satisfy an urgent order (and probably because she had no stylist at hand), the Director of Collections asked me to draw a complete collection of women ready-to-wear clothes for an Iranian Buyer, who would pick up the sketches herself, two days later. I was not going to miss such an opportunity!!! So I drew about fifty women clothes, taking inspiration from the fabric samples I was given. To my great satisfaction, not only did the Iranian Buyer retain all my models, but the Collections Manager congratulated me for "my style and creativity". Of course, I could not keep on drawing for the Louis Féraud company, or even be paid, as I was an Intern at the Press Service, not a Stylist! But I was offered a second internship at the "Couture" workshop in order to improve myself in styling and to learn how to make "Haute Couture" clothes. I was crazy for joy! However, I suppose that it was not my destiny ... Just after I had signed a second internship agreement, Louis Féraud died. A few months later, the Couture House closed and I had to give up my dream...
So I started looking for a job as a Stylist. At each interview, I presented my complete book, was congratulated for "my talent", but as I had no diploma or professional reference, nobody wanted to give me a chance. A Grand Couturier to whom I had sent my book even replied: "Despite your motivation, your passion and all the interest that your application represents, I draw my collections myself. What I need is marketing professionals to promote and sell my products." That's just too bas ... I should have sent him my resume instead of my book of fashion sketches!
A few weeks later, I had the opportunity to draw a range of contemporary rugs for a Parisian company. I made more than 500 sketches, but since I only received a tiny percentage of sales, and because the products were only made to order, it did not meet my financial needs.
1998: So I started looking for "some real job" to earn my living.
After difficult beginnings (by enriching my career with new skills, I finished my studies at 27 and I was considered too old for a first job!), I compiled odd jobs: Trilingual hostess at Parisian trade shows, Freelance Trade Translator and finally Executive Assistant at the Carrousel du Louvre, a job that I accepted for one year, without any motivation. I did it by pure opportunism, because it allowed me to be in direct contact with two of my passions: painting and fashion. I hated this job, but it allowed me to meet many artists (fashion designers, painters, photographers, musicians,...).
One year later, I was offered a new position and started working as Assistant to the International Marketing Director of an event company. From this period on, I started living as a workaholic quite unable to find time to touch a single brush...
"Passion is me... and it's stronger than me"
Alain, About Happiness (1928)
- I have been working as a Communication, Digital and Marketing Director for more than 18 years in a big entertainment company (artists management, concerts, corporate events, sports, leisure). I love my job, especially the management of digital projects, consulting and the training of clients and collaborators. However, I've never given up my dreams!
2009: After having carried out research work, written my business plan, built my professional network and participated in an accounting training for entrepreneurs, I created my own company, took an artist name and started painting and exhibiting my collections. Then I created my website and started a long but exciting marketing and promotion work in France and abroad.
From 2009 on, I have painted more than a thousand artworks, taken part in more than 150 exhibitions in France and abroad (>>> Read my references) and was awarded about fifty distinctions.
2018: As part of a representation and affiliation contract with a US company, I designed a line of women clothes and fashion accessories, as well as a range of interior decoration items, all derived from my paintings. Read the page "Fashion and decoration" >>> Go to my online store
I want to earn my living in order to paint, not to paint in order to earn my living...
As I already have a full-time paid job and because I will never thank Heaven enough for helping me achieve two of my greatest dreams, I made the conscious choice to donate all the money I'll earn with the sale of my fashion and home decoration by-products to humanitarian associations. To this end, I recently created and deposited the brand "Have a heART".
"You must become who you are. Do what you only can do!"
Friedrich Nietzsche - Thus Spoke Zarathustra (1857)
I will soon be 50. And I must say that I am happy with all the experiences I lived, both good and bad ones, especially the bad ones. Indeed, they finally proved to be the most beneficial, since they pushed me on paths that I would never have chosen to follow by myself and - for a reason I ignore - helped me reach my goals!
I do not believe in chance. I believe in a perfect plan for all of us. I do not regret anything that I have lived, but the only thing I'm sure of today is that I will never more be able to spend ONE day without painting or drawing!
Creation, whatever its forms, is at the same time my passion, my aim and my reason for living.
That's why I chose this quote from Khalil Gibran as a creed: "I crave for Eternity, because there I shall meet my unwrittens poems and the artworks I haven't painted yet. "
Welcome to my world which is also the most beautiful part of my life ... and thank you for your visits and comments!