Renee Bouchon grew up in New Orleans, where a childhood spent attending art camps and soaking up the eclectic and vibrant culture of the city instilled an early love of all things creative. An advertising degree from the University of Georgia led to a career in that field, but painting remained her favorite escape and she started painting professionally in 2010 as an outlet from the day-to-day of the ad world. Her inspiration comes in all forms, but she has a particular passion for the coast and much of her work is inspired by the feeling and colors of life on the water. She sells her work in boutiques all along the East coast and when she’s not working or creating, you’re likely to find her cruising the back alleyways of Charleston, South Carolina, or burying her feet in the white sands of Seaside, Florida.
When did you know you wanted to pursue your business or venture? Friends, and friends of friends, began asking me to do commissions for their homes. I realized that I was happiest when I had a paintbrush in hand, and knew that I couldn’t not do it.
Did your original business plan change along the way or are you doing exactly what you set out to do? If it changed, how so? I’m just doing what I love to do and the plan seems to be creating itself along the way…and growing quicker than I ever expected!
What makes you different from your competition? I don’t follow any rules. I explore a variety of different styles and techniques and my paintings are ever-changing as opposed to sticking to a certain “style”. That’s the fun of it! Inspiration comes in all forms and I love translating that to the canvas.
Tell us about a time when you thought you should throw in the towel. What kept you going? I thought about putting my business on hold when I overcommitted to painting too many commissions on top of my job in advertising, which was insanely busy at the time. It was just too much and I was getting more stressed over getting it all done than actually enjoying it.
What three factors have most contributed to your success in business and in life? Commitment, gumption, and patience.
If you could have a one-on-one meeting with any woman, who would it be and why? What’s the first thing you would you ask her? The president and executive creative director of J.Crew, Jenna Lyons. Her fresh vision never ceases to amaze me so I would love to ask her where she finds inspiration.
I gave up ____ to pursue my dream. Nothing…yet! So far I’ve managed to juggle my hectic job in advertising while successfully launching and growing my painting career and it seems to be working for the time being.
My biggest challenge is… Juggling two jobs!
My proudest professional moment to date is… When I launched my art website.
LET’S GET PERSONAL:
The three words that best describe me are… Creative, inquisitive, and eager.
While on vacation I always… UNPLUG and sleep in – I’m the person that can sleep until 2:00 in the afternoon if given the chance.
On my playlist right now you will find… Bon Iver, Sam Smith, Mumford & Sons, Lord Huron, Hozier.
My tips for eating healthy during the workday are… Lots of small meals (I’m always munching!) and TONS of H2O.
My favorite type of workout is… The Blast 900 circuit training class in Atlanta, Georgia.
I rejuvenate by… Indulging in a facial!
Lately I’m inspired by… Exploring new painting styles and mediums. Art is limitless and I’m constantly wanting to create.