Who Is Annabel Faustin ?
“The mystery of human existence lies not in just staying alive, but in finding something to live for.” ―Fyodor Dostoyevsky
One of Annabel Faustin’s paintings (Night and Day meet in the early morning) really touched me when I first saw it a few months ago, so much so that I wrote a poem about it. But that wasn’t enough. See, I’d read an interview that Annabel had done and realized that her and I have a few things in common. We both were working fulltime jobs which weren’t fulfilling for us and so we both left our jobs at around the age of 28 to pursue our passion; to lead a more fulfilling life. Having read that interview, I wanted to reach out and hear her story; I know how everything in my life led me to finding my purpose and so was curious about the background of her story! That said, we hopped on a Zoom call and got to talking and realized we had even more in common! Without further a due, this is the story of Annabel Faustin, who left her job in Luxury Brand Management to pursue her passion for painting.
Born to a painter father and a hippie/ideal Parisian woman mother, Annabel’s upbringing was rooted in creativity and open-mindedness. Her first memory is of her and her father in his atelier at the age of 4; a memory that brought all her senses to life with the smell and feel of the paint and finding herself surrounded by colors! She grew up with a love for painting that was ingrained in her at a very young age. And in parallel, grew up to become the perfect Parisian woman – with beauty and poise becoming such an important part of her life thanks to her mom. Annabel credits her mom for her spiritual openness and upbringing because her spiritual upbringing is a big part of her work. Finding this balance between Parisian woman and painter has been quite a challenge for Annabel who’s now embracing the messier aspects of being a painter! Little by little, she started embracing a freer way of being, of letting go the perfectionism that comes with being a Parisian woman; of always being put together with hair, skin, makeup, clothes, nails etc. all perfect all the time.
As a creative, working with luxury clients was very time and energy consuming, and it was at the expense of her creativity. In an attempt to get back in touch wither her creative side, she picked up her brush and, as they say, the rest is history. In 2020, she decided to become a full time painter! And so, she left her job and started off by working on personal commissions through friends’ referrals and realized that she her expression was limited and was based on others and what meaning they were seeking in paintings. Things started moving very quickly for her, doors opening left and right with solo shows and features on different blogs and in magazine! She was giving her all to painting and felt happy and free for the first time in a while. And, just like with anything else, there are growing pains which she’s adjusting to. Annabel is trying to find a good routine that works for her right now. Because when you make an entire industry and career shift, you effectively become a beginner and this part is very hard to accept. Because you’re experiencing things for the first time ever, all over again – things you thought you’d put behind you already. Because you’re having career firsts all over again as an experienced adult and this is particularly hard for the ego to be put in this situation! However, in living life as a painter, she realized how much she didn’t fit into the Parisian bohemian artist cliché because even as a creative, she enjoys rules and a sense of routine – to offer a little bit of structure in this crazy and chaotic world we’re living in. She’s doing things the Annabel way – with a dash of creativity and a sprinkle of Parisian womanhood. As we wrapped up our call, I asked her what one piece of advice she’d give herself at the beginning of her journey and she said: to be kind to herself. To be less hard on herself than she tends to be and instead to do what she can do instead of forcing perfectionism on everything.
At the end of the day, she has meaning in her life; she’s leading a fulfilled life and that, more than anything else, makes her proud of everything she’s accomplished. And this is just the beginning! With so many creative ideas and themes to explore every day, learning how to produce faster, and be more confident in her expression, Annabel’s journey is one she’s very eager to be on.
Catch Annabel’s solo online exhibition “Travel Inside My Heart” on fouryougallery!