Today I would love to introduce you to one of my French girlfriends, who is also one of my blogging friends. I point that out, because you may be surprised at just how few french girls I know here who blog! I have been following Céline’s blog Boite d’Aquarelles pretty much since I discovered blogging. I love her sure eye, and of course I always have time to sit and watch someone paint, so I’m thrilled when she shows her paintings in various stages of progression.
Céline writes a blog about her lovely part of the world in Auxerre, a charming town, about two hours south and ever-so-slightly east of Paris, and also about her beautiful watercolour paintings, in particular those of houses and French architecture.
I visited her a couple of weeks ago, and was totally delighted to discover her beautiful 16th century home, hidden behind a secret gate in this pretty and ancient town. This is when I have to warn you that this post is going to be a little picture heavy … her house was just too photogenic!
Céline studied fine art, but even before that, art was an obvious past time, because her mother was an illustrator , and encouraged all of her children to pick up a brush.
Céline worked as an illustrator for a while, then decided to combine her love of the French ‘patrimoine’ or national treasure, with her love of watercolours, and she started to paint portraits of houses.
Speaking of which, do you recognise this? …
Yes, that’s right, when Céline knew I was coming to visit, she gifted me the most stunning portrait of our house, which is now framed and on the wall above my desk. I just love the way she caught the essential nature of our house, friendly and approachable.
The beauty of working as an illustrator and artist, is that you can work from home. Céline combines her work with caring for her house and her family.
She and her husband Olivier both love to hunt for brocante and antique treasures, and their house is a wonderful lesson in curating and careful collecting of objects without ever becoming overwhelming.
Her kitchen for example, is tiled in old blue and white tiles that she bought over the years until she had enough to cover the wall. The lovely coppers are all antiques that she bought piece by piece, and their divine kitchen island, is an antique counter or cupboard, that she and Olivier converted for use in their kitchen – stunning!
Céline has painted a lot of the furniture in their home, including the kitchen island and the kitchen cupboard, she even painted the piano!
Today Céline paints for her pleasure, and has a couple of books portraying the architecture of France, including one about the Aisne region which came out recently.
She is also available for painting house portraits on commission. She works from photos, (as I can attest) or she can move around. Frankly my photos do not do justice to the beauty and accuracy of her paintings, they are even more beautiful in real life.
If you would like to ask Céline about painting your house, then you can contact her HERE, and maybe include a photo of your house for her to see.
Thank you Céline for opening up your home for us, and for sharing your beautiful artwork.