We are delighted to announce the winner of our 2020 artist competition - congratulations Rachel Froud! She came top out of 7000 entries - more than ever - to join our gift company along with 5 fantastic runners up.
Rachel is a self-taught artist from Hertfordshire, and uses paint brushes, palette knives and even her hands to create these stunning (and enormous!) works of art. You can find her brand new range here, featuring cushions, tea towels and fine art prints. Meanwhile, here's a little more about Rachel and her work...
What does a typical day look like for you?
I don't really have a typical routine, I tend to work on what feels right or what needs doing on that day. But an average day for me would be painting or doing other creative work in the mornings, that's usually when I feel the most motivated. I take my little rescue dog Coco for a walk at about lunchtime, she loves her lay ins so it's hard to get her up any earlier! If I'm really getting into my painting I will carry on the afternoon, but if I have a lot of other work to catch up on I will spend the afternoons on my laptop trying to get organised!
What mediums do you work in?
Most of my paintings are acrylic paint on canvas. I have also experimented with combining acrylic inks into my paintings too which is really fun! I usually use a mix of brushes, palette knives, sponges and even sometimes my hands to create a piece, I love the different textures each one creates.
Where do you get inspiration from?
Most of my inspiration comes from wildlife and the natural world. My favourite subject to paint is animals, I am completely fascinated by them. The way they move, their individual personalities, everything about them interests me. I hope to one day be able to use my art to help animals in need.
Which artists do you admire or have influenced you?
I admire so many artists, at different stages in their careers, anyone who has had the courage to follow their dreams and make a living from their art really inspires me and motivates me to work harder. Kate Tova is an amazing artist that I follow on Instagram, her work is very different to mine, but I find myself inspired every time I see her work, she's very talented and creates beautifully colourful pieces of art. I also really admire Sophie Tea, she is completely smashing it in the art world and she reminds me how important it is to treat art as a business.
What's the greatest challenge of being an artist?
I think the greatest challenge for me has been confidence. Not just as an artist but in life in general. I was always a really shy child, apparently I used to hide behind my mum at parties because I didn't want to see anyone! Fortunately I'm not that shy now, however I still find it difficult to put myself out there and promote my art. I think a lot of artists struggle with self promotion, not knowing if our work is good enough, and most of the time it's all in our heads!
What's your top tip for other artists?
Try not to get stuck on living up to other people's expectations. Create what you want to create, not what you think other people want you to make. If you are really passionate about your art people will see that and love it as much as you do.
What would your dream job be?
Artist! My dream is to continue on the path I'm on now and hopefully become more successful in the future.
Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will - Suzy Kassem
You can now shop Rachel's range at: https://www.wraptious.com/collections/rachel-froud