True Colors November 2019 Guest Artist: Rachel Cronin
I am a freelance artist and art teacher living in a small village on the edge of the Cotswolds in the UK. I have been painting as long as I can remember, and I saved up my pocket money to buy first set of watercolour paints when I was 11. I still have the sable brush that came with the set though it’s looking a little battered these days!
I went to art college as a 19-year-old but drifted away from painting and towards gainful employment and a sensible relationship. I was preparing myself a mortgage, marriage and potential motherhood when it all came to a sudden end in 2010. I found myself living with my parents and, to distract myself from misery, tentatively picked up my paints and brushes again.
The intervening eight years have seen me build up a portfolio of local art classes and workshops and alongside a stack of paintings and sketchbooks. I have worked for an arts charity planning a curriculum of classes and exhibitions as well as running a local community gallery for emerging artists. I have also been through redundancy, illness, infertility and all the worry and self-doubt that comes with choosing the path less travelled. I can’t tell you that at the end of all this I have a six figure a year business, but I can tell that life is better when you create, and it is better when you don’t ignore the nagging voice telling you to get your paints out. Art is now part of my everyday and every part of my existence is improved because of it.
These days I divide my time between teaching classes and painting. Since I now have more time for my painting my work has changed dramatically. I paint mainly abstract landscapes inspired by the places I love. I work with watercolour, acrylic and gouache as well as dry media like crayons, pencils and pastels. I have a no rules approach to mixing media and creating art and I love the freedom that gives me!