Featured Artist Rachel Favelle

Australian artist Rachel Favelle presents figurative paintings that explore the contrast between light and darkness, and the interdependence of humans and nature. Learn more by visiting her website.

 

“The Haunting of Briar Rose” Oil on Board, 15” x 15” by artist Rachel Favelle. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“The Haunting of Briar Rose” Oil on Board, 15” x 15”

 

During my illustration degree I had a keen fascination with fairy tales, initially researching the writings of the Brothers Grimm and then ancient mythology. On the surface, fairy tales are a form of escapism to a faraway magical place. While they are filled with magic and wonder, I was more interested in the life lessons they communicated.

 

“Lavender Rabbit Girl” Oil on Canvas, 20” x 30” by artist Rachel Favelle. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Lavender Rabbit Girl” Oil on Canvas, 20” x 30”

 

Fairy tales teach us to become more in touch with nature and animals. Many of my paintings juxtapose figures with flora and fauna, engulfing the individual in a memory or an experience. This morphing of soft organic shapes with the human form reflects the impact of our surroundings in who we become, and help inform our identity.

 

“Dancing in the Dark” Oil on Board, 14” x 18” by artist Rachel Favelle. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Dancing in the Dark” Oil on Board, 14” x 18”

 

Living in a country town as a child, I found that swimming holes, the smell of grassy fields, campfires and dusty roads formed the backdrop of my childhood and in turn my connection to nature.

 

“Dreams of the Deer’s Heart” Oil on Board, 15” x 15” by artist Rachel Favelle. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Dreams of the Deer’s Heart” Oil on Board, 15” x 15”

 

I am also drawn to fairy tales as they reflect the overcoming of a problem or a struggle. In my narratives I explore characters wrestling with their own moral choices. My art is a contrast between softness and darkness—the blackened backgrounds, bare branches, thorns, ravens and blood-stained apples are juxtaposed against delicate flowers, luscious greenery and forest animals.

 

“In Search of the Light” Oil on Board, 10” x 12” by artist Rachel Favelle. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“In Search of the Light” Oil on Board, 10” x 12”

 

My art explores the multifaceted nature of people; their darkness and lightness, their ability to face adversity and succeed.

 

“Water” Oil on Linen, 30” x 40” by artist Rachel Favelle. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Water” Oil on Linen, 30” x 40”

 

While fictional storytelling has been a driving force in my work, my connection to the experience of childhood has been my overarching influence. Antoine de Saint-Exupery of The Little Prince stated, “All grownups were once children…but only a few of them remember it.”

 

“Teddy and Bear” Oil on Linen, 30” x 40” by artist Rachel Favelle. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Teddy and Bear” Oil on Linen, 30” x 40”

 

Much of my art-making practice has involved producing commissions of children and families. These big-eyed stylized portraits of children set in richly coloured alternate worlds aim to celebrate the innocence of childhood.

 

“Odette’s Dream” Oil on Board, 10” x 12” by artist Rachel Favelle. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Odette’s Dream” Oil on Board, 10” x 12”

 

Working as an art teacher, I often witness other people’s struggles when it comes to creating art. There is often the misconception, when people hear of my past successes and future projects, that I sit in my studio for large parts of the day sipping coffee and dabbling in oil paint when I am not sharing my passion for art making with others. This could not be further from the truth. Much of my time is spent performing routine tasks; yard duties, marking essays, rushing kids to after school events, preparing meals and putting my children to bed.

 

“Water Dancer” Mixed Media on Yupo, 14” x 18” by artist Rachel Favelle. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Water Dancer” Mixed Media on Yupo, 14” x 18”

 

My own personal struggle as an artist has been trying to find time to produce art and then having the confidence to promote my own work, which does not come naturally to me. In the end, I have the belief that persistence is the key and every little bit that you do, no matter how small, counts.

 

Artist Rachel Favelle in her studio. See her portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

Artist Rachel Favelle in her studio

 

At present my work is exhibited throughout Australia and internationally in Portugal, San Diego and Chicago. I look forward to opening my first international solo show in Chicago at Curly Tale Gallery as well as releasing my second children’s book in the coming year.

 

Artist Rachel Favelle invites you to follow her on Instagram and Facebook.

 

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