Meet Rachel Ferrier
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How did you start creating?
As a kid, as early as I can remember, I had coloring books and painting sets and did crafts with my family. That evolved into drawing and painting my own designs as I got older. I mainly do watercolor now, but I like making things in all kinds of mediums -- gouache, colored pencil, acrylic, and craftier things like making journals and sketchbooks.
Favorite Paint and Color to work with?
I mainly use Winsor & Newton watercolors; I love their Indigo color, as it's pretty on its own but also adds a nice depth and dimension to other colors.
Favorite thing you have ever created?
This is a tough question! My answer would probably change depending on the day, but right now it's a painting I did of a switcher engine called "Nekoosa Paper 14," which they have up at the Illinois Railway Museum. The IRM is a really fun place to explore, especially if you like trains at all, and my painting has those good memories attached to it.
Something most do not know about you
Something most do not know about you: when I was about 19, a talent scout found me on MySpace (remember that?) and invited me to join their agency as a model. Two photo shoots and several hundred dollars later, I gave up, having only landed one (paid) gig handing out samples at a College Night event. Being in college myself, I didn't have the time to apply to the gigs in their job database (a lot of which were in NYC or LA, whereas I was in Michigan), so I ended my modeling career before it began and pursued my BA in English instead
Flashback to when you were 10 years old. What do you want to be when you grow up?
Well, when I was about that age, I made a little book talking about how I wanted to be either a writer, an artist, or a cashier when I grew up, haha. (I can say I've since tried my hand at all three!)
If you could choose anywhere in the world to live, where would it be and why?
I'd like to be close to the water again: an ocean or a lake or even a really good river -- central Illinois is pretty landlocked! Other than that I don't have a specific location in mind. Maybe New England or the mid-Atlantic area? For me, being near water is a really good place to think and plan and create, and it'd be nice to do that more regularly.
Finish this sentence. On Sunday mornings, you can usually find me...
in a comfy chair with a cup of coffee, reading a book or journaling, probably with a cat in my lap (assuming I'm not traveling or visiting family).
How do you want people to remember you?
I'd love to be remembered for my art, and for that to have a positive effect on people's lives. I try to create things that bring more beauty into the world and that feel accessible to people, as I'm really averse to the idea of art being a lofty academic thing that not everyone can access or understand or participate in. I have some big dreams for the future, including opening my own artists' residency/retreat, and I hope some of those things will carry on and make positive (and lasting) contributions too.
Banana Bread with Walnuts
1 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature,plus more for preparing the pan
1 cup sugar
3 very ripe bananas, peeled, and mashed witha fork (about 1 cup)
1/2 cup toasted walnuts
1-Sift the flour, baking soda, and salt intoa medium bowl, set aside. Whisk the eggs and vanilla together in a liquid measuring cup with a spout, set aside.
Lightly brush a 9 by 5 by 3-inch loaf panwith butter. Preheat the oven to 350degrees F.
2- In a standing mixer fitted with thepaddle attachment or with an electric hand-held mixer, cream the butter andsugar until light and fluffy. Gradually pour the egg mixture into the butter while mixing until incorporated. Add the bananas (the mixture will appear to be curdled, so don'tworry), and remove the bowl from the mixer.
3- With a rubber spatula, mix in the flour mixture until just incorporated. Fold in the nuts and transfer the batter to theprepared pan. Bake for 55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of thebread comes out clean.
Cool the bread inthe pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Turn the bread out of the pan and let cool completely on the rack. Wrap in plastic wrap. The banana bread is best if served the next day.