Rachel Alvarez

ARTIST / SMALL BUSINESS OWNER - RACHEL ALVAREZ ART

Hello, Rachel here. My full-time job is being a stay at home mom to the two most adorable tiny humans on the planet. While they're napping, I drink my coffee and I paint.

What makes you stand out in the maker community?

I think that the one thing that people seem to relate to with my work is the joyful balance of motherhood and art that is present in my work. Being a mother has proven to be my greatest artistic endeavor. Balancing the love of nurturing and protecting our children all day while finding the time to satisfy the need to produce has been quite an interesting challenge. However, it has provided me with a great opportunity for artistic growth. Honestly, before my time crunch, I would spend unlimited amounts of time doling over the same painting. Now, I have 50 minutes. Maybe less, maybe more. I cannot be lazy. I love it. The passion that I have found in small pockets of time is something that I've been told inspires others to reach for their dreams, even when they are under incredible time restraints or up against all odds.

Tell us about your work and the projects you are currently working on.

At the moment, I have been working more with custom art than ever before. No two days are the same, which I absolutely love. In the last few months, I've had the privilege to collaborate with other makers for art-related needs such as logos, product and packaging design and custom hand- drawn illustrations. The wholesale side of my business is growing, and so I've been spending a lot of type strengthening my relationships with Brick & Mortar shops that support and carry my work across the country.

Who is your favorite contemporary artist or maker?

I am absolutely in awe of the work of UK environmental artist Tim Pugh. Using natural materials in the outdoors, exposed to the elements, his sculptures are very temporary and short-lived. I love his use of color, texture and shape. His work brings to light the intricate beauty nature, and both celebrates and honors it's fragile state.

What inspired you to become a maker?

My grandfather was my greatest artistic inspiration. He was an art therapist with a wonderful passion for all things creative. When he passed away in 2014, my brother and I promised each other that we would honor his legacy by getting back into our art. At that time, I hadn't painted since college - which I had graduated from 12 years earlier. So much of what I have painted celebrates his venturesome side- one that always encouraged me to take the road less traveled and not be afraid to get a little lost in adventure along the way.