Rachel Breaux, talented artist and UWG student, creates meaningful and unique paintings. Breaux has loved art ever since she was a young child. However, she fell in love with painting in high school because she needed a way to step out of reality and into something that gave her hope.
Her world was turned upside down when her high school boyfriend, Noah Bishop, was diagnosed with epithelioid sarcoma, a rare and aggressive soft tissue cancer, at just 14. Unfortunately, he died on April 9, 2015. Breaux desperately needed to find some joy and painting provided her with a chance to get lost in a world of passion, color and creativity.
“I fell in love with it because it was my main outlet,” said Breaux. “I lost someone extremely close to me my freshman year of high school, and I struggled to recover from it. I don’t think I would have without painting. It’s so easy to lose yourself in art.”
Most of Breaux’s artistic inspiration came from her hometown art teacher, Dr. Adam Scurr. Scurr first taught Breaux art at Temple Elementary, but he eventually moved up to teach at Temple High School where Breaux had the privilege of learning from him once again. Scurr has helped many young kids and teenagers express themselves artistically and has pushed Breaux is pushed past her artistic limits and opened up to a whole world of confidence and imagination.
“Every time I think I can’t develop further as an artist, he pushes me beyond what I believe my limit is,” said Breaux. “He taught me that with determination and a lot of patience, I can get my paintbrushes to do just about anything on a canvas.”
That is exactly what Breaux does. From roaring seas to starlit skies, Breaux paints it all. In her painting “Aphrodite,” the colors are carefully chosen and symbolize a deeper meaning than meets the eye.
“Aphrodite is the Greek Goddess of love and beauty. Red symbolizes love, so I made sure to incorporate a lot of it everywhere in the picture. Her lips and eyes are notably painted violet, which symbolizes power and royalty,” said Breaux. “Seeing how she is the goddess of love and beauty, she is naturally very seductive, and with that, there is a lot of power in her lips and her gaze.”
A very different painting, “Riding on a Wave,” portrays a blue and green ocean, and Breaux had a particular life lesson on her mind when painting this piece.
“Waves remind me that there is a lot of push and pull, not only in the ocean but in life. The trick is to learn how to surf,” said Breaux.
Breaux sees ocean waves as a symbol of life’s trials and that in this lifetime individuals must learn to balance everything they love. As people start entering college and reaching adulthood, this is an incredible lesson to learn. Life is a lot of give and take. People must make sacrifices for what they most desire, but in the end, it is worth it.
Because Breaux is so passionate about her pieces, she wants to share them. Although she does commissions, she also gives her paintings as gifts to those close to her heart.
“With my personal paintings, I paint what I love and am interested in, or I paint for others,” said Breaux. “The joy and smiles of people who receive my paintings is so incredibly rewarding. It’s a way to show them in a palpable way how much they mean to me.”
Even though she may not be a world-renowned artist yet, her art teaches everyone to give generously and live passionately in a world where these virtues are often forgotten.