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Rebecca "Bekaz" Azzouz
I want my paintings bring joy and pleasure to others.
How Do I Do It?
I receive inspiration. I then take that inspiration along with canvas, oil paint, brushes and all my talent and skill and I create something new and beautiful.
Each painting is induced by an ah-ha moment. I can be inspired by a photo or simply by the landscape that surrounds me. I can be inspired by a figure or by divine inspiration itself. I simply know that I must paint.
I am simply driven by sheer passion to create what I feel is beautiful.
How Did I Become An Artist?
I’ve always loved art, my mother is an artist. A very creative woman that sewed, painted, cooked, helped with school plays, and sang in the choir when I was growing up. My mother could take the ugliest house and make it a beautiful home just by adding her touch. My mom taught me to paint my first painting, when I was just 7 years old she sat me up on a table next to her and gave me art supplies and told me to paint, this was so that I didn’t run off making messes while she painted her paintings, of course.
As I grew up I’ve always drawn mostly with colored pencils, I knew that I would become an artist, and when I was 17 or 18 years old my mom pushed me to put away the pencils and pick up oil painting.
At the end of my high school years reality set-in and I decided that I had to become a graphic artist in order to make money in the real world. So, I started my career out as a graphic artist. I was unhappy and burned out, unfulfilled and soon resented my job. For the next 18 years I would go back and forth between painting, wanting so bad to be an artist, and feeling like I had to be a graphic artist if I wanted to make money.
However, during the recession of 2008 I lost 75-80% of my income in a blink of an eye, I lost my home to a bad mortgage and I found myself lost and confused. I felt like I had been working so hard for so long trying to do what was right, sticking with computers and the technology world through graphics, and now it was BLAH! I had been slapped in the face with reality, TRUE REALITY! So, I decided to pack up all my stuff or give it away, and I enrolled into The Marchutz School for Drawing and Painting in Aix-en-Provence, south of France. Here I learned about the masters of Impressionism and Van Gogh. I fell in love with life again, I was so inspired by everything around me, as we traveled from place to place and studied painting after painting, I grew as an artist and as a person.
When I returned to the United States I kept painting, I moved in with my mother to help her for a time. Always telling myself and my loved ones that I was staying for too long because I was moving to Paris to become an artist…. And I DID!
I up and left everything behind once again, this time not to attend school, but to live and develop myself as an artist in Paris, France. Paris is my favorite city in the world. It has a beauty and elegance that is all her own, she has her own unique ambiance. There's something compelling and romantic that inspires you: is it her beautiful architecture? The blue rooftops, or the Louvre, or Notre Dame? Maybe its hearing others speak french over their cafe au laits. With my Paris collection this is what I wanted to capture, that elegant, charming, old world, with a hint of romance and of course the Eiffel Tower herself.
This time of my life was surreal, days where I would walk for hours getting lost through they winding cobblestone streets, taking photos of everything that inspired me from lamp posts, doors, vespa scooters, etc… It was my first few months of just taking it all in.
When spring arrived, I was thrilled with bright sunny days, although it wasn’t quite warm yet, most Parisians were out enjoying the day as well. One day in particular I was in rapturous joy, I decided to have a tea at Le Palette a well known café for artists throughout the ages on Rue de Seine. Once I finished my tea I began walking along the Seine river, when I got to the famous Pont des Arts bridge I saw a friend, or collegue, and artist Michel that always paints there. He was just arriving and getting ready to set up his easel. As I walked towards him to say hello, a woman on a bicycle literally crashed into me, my right arm and shoulder pounding, I caught my balance, and was just in shock as I looked around I noticed a man with out stretched arms saying something to me, but since I had my headphones on and music blasting in my ears I didn’t hear him. I continued on the last few feet forward and visited with Monsieur Michel. After, I continued walking down Pont des Arts towards the Louvre and I noticed out of the corner of my eye someone walking next to me, so I walked faster, he was still there, at the end of the bridge I took a right and so did he, so I took the headphones off and said, “Are you following me?”
He says, “Sure, where’s the problem.”
I laughed, and said, “Who agrees to being a stalker?”
He just nodded.
I thought, oh, maybe he doesn’t speak English. So, I say, “Would you like to speak French?”
“Oui” he said.
And that was it, that was the day I met my husband, and I can’t tell you how grateful I am for the woman who crashed into me with her bicycle. Thank you miss, thank you.
During my time in Paris I would go to the small bridge that connects to the garden at Notre Dame and I would paint every day, and I would also sell my paintings to many people around the world. I enjoyed every minute of it, I grew as an artist, and I developed friendships with people that I simply adore.
What Do Others Say?
“You never fail at making me feel like I’m in your painting! Beautiful.” - Katherine Polack
"I can visualize myself as part of the painting”
- BJ, Goergia
“Powerful Visionary, Refreshing,
Glamorous, Lovely, Custom, French!”
What Makes Me Unique?
I capture the essence or ambiance, that overall feeling of a place, so that the viewer feels as if they are actually there. That they can step into the painting from within.
My Personal Quest:
“To take you on a journey down your favorite street. Recreating a memory or a moment of joy, happiness and love!”
As for now, I continue to paint my paintings, many of which are of Paris for this city will always have a piece of my heart. I’m also expanding my signature by painting - Bridges Around The World.
Since leaving Paris (returning to USA) we have been on a new journey to find “our” place, the city that we will call home. However, we have not found anything that compares to our home in Paris. We may eventually return to Paris in the future. Why not? Anything is possible.
Stay tuned….. I don’t know exactly where my journey will take me, but I’m excited to take the ride!
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