Artist Francoise Lama-Solet on her abstract art, fashion design, and creative flow.  

interview with fine art lifestyle

Something special about her art will make you smile and fall in love with colors, flowers, and life. She creates from the heart with soft brush strokes that turn into inspiring paintings full of optimism and joy. Whether it’s an abstract painting or an impressionist style, they are united by the idea of showing a beautiful world with art mediums. Let me introduce you to Francoise Lama-Solet, my friend, a talented French artist.

Tell us a little about yourself. 

I was born in Paris and grew up in the suburbs. I did my studies and worked in Paris. In 2000 I moved to California with my husband and four-year-old son, where we lived for eleven years, and then moved to Georgia state.  

francoise lama-solet artist
abstract artist francoise lama-solet

How has your background influenced your artistic work?  

My most significant influence in terms of painting was my aunt, who was an impressionist painter. I have always admired her work. However, my painting style is very different from hers and has grown through my journey of discovery and creation. I also come from a family with many other artistic talents.

Do you think being born and raised in France influenced your art? 

It’s possible. My wearable art fashion definitively has a French and European flare. 

fashion brand francoise lama-solet

Francoise Lama-Solet on her abstract art

How did you start painting?

As a child, I loved to draw and paint but stopped when I went to college. Then, at the end of 2018, I reproduced some of my fabric prints on stretched canvas. That’s when the fun started. I got canvases and some paint and did a couple of paintings with my fabric patterns. But I wanted more. I’m a “starving” artist, always looking for something new to learn. So I started watching YouTube videos about abstract painting, and that’s when I began to appreciate abstract art, which I didn’t like before. I am more of an impressionist person, and that’s how I started. In January 2019, I took an abstract art class at the Johns Creek Art Center, and since then, I haven’t stopped painting. 

abstract at painting

I would have started painting again sooner, but something was holding me back because I was worried and afraid I was not good enough. So when I “discovered” abstract art, I thought, well, I can go with it because if I make a mistake, no one will see it. I was so worried about doing wrong and being judged. Abstract painting has allowed me to let go of those fears and feelings.

But still, my fashion brand is also art. Because what I am doing is wearable art. When I print a piece of fabric, paint it, or hand dye it, my art goes onto the fabric. Combining fabrics, colors, and patterns is also art. So, art has always been a part of me; although I was not calling myself an artist until recently, it was always there with me.

fabrics DIY for clothing
beautiful clothing fabrics

What is the main theme of your art? 

abstract painting art tree




What type of paint do you use? 

I use acrylic paints and ink. While developing my techniques, I also recently started to play and experiment with mixed media oil and cold wax painting. I tried pure oil painting two years ago and enjoyed it. Oil and acrylics both have very different textures. Oil is like butter that you spread on a piece of bread. Oil takes a long time to dry, so you have to wait; it makes it hard to work with layers and wait for them to dry. 

And with acrylics, you must work very fast because it dries quickly. It all depends on what you want to do. Some painters do the first layer with acrylics and then finish with oil. I may also try this technique later. But you can’t work paint with acrylics on top of oils because it will not stick to oil. Those are the tricks you learn by researching and experimenting. Working with mixed media oil and cold wax is fun. You play with layers, adding more and removing some to reveal the underlayer, creating many textures and marks. 

acrylic paints for abstract art
paint brushes for abstract paintings

How did you develop your art skills?

I first took painting classes at the local art center, then online classes from artists I admire, reading books and watching YouTube videos. I also love to experiment and try new techniques and practice every day.  

artist francoise lama-solet at work

How did your art change over time?  

Your art will change as you grow in your art and learn new techniques and skills. You might like some newly discovered techniques you were not using before and decide to apply them in your painting. Your color scheme and the subject of interest might change as well. It’s part of the artist’s growth. 

artist francoise lama-solet Atlanta
books about painting

Did the theme of your art change since you started painting? 

The first paintings I did were more abstract because I was taking abstract art classes. But Nature, flowers, and landscapes have always been in my heart. Recently I did a painting inspired by our trip to Iceland; it’s a painting of a waterfall. And I included mountains also, which I had never painted before. And after I finished, someone said: “It’s different from what you usually do.” At first, I didn’t understand why they said it because I employed the techniques I used with all of my acrylic paintings. But then I realized that she was referring to the theme of the painting: the mountains and waterfall, which I never did before. So I added more elements to my art, such as mountains and waterfalls, that I was previously afraid to paint. To paint them, I needed to study techniques I didn’t know and decided to experiment. In the future, I want to work more on seascapes. I already paint seascapes, but I want to experiment with a different technique than the one I use.

abstract art paintings by francoise lama-solet
abstract nature paitnings by francoise lama-solet

How did you start your clothing brand, and what inspired it?  

I started sewing when I was a kid. My dream was to be a seamstress for the “grand couturiers” in Paris, but my parents disapproved, saying that I would be paid very little for a challenging job. So I gave up on that dream but continued sewing for myself. While working in Paris, I also sewed for myself and my close friends. When we moved to the US, I created my fashion brand. Initially, I was making clothing primarily for kids because I got inspired by becoming an aunt. I enjoyed creating clothing for my nieces, and at some point, I realized I was having too much fun creating clothing, and I decided to expand. 

clothing brand francoise lama-solet

How did you move into creating clothing for women?  

My friends in California told me they loved my children’s designs and that I should do something similar for adults. So I did, and that’s how I started creating clothing for women. I first struggled with the kind of designs I wanted to offer for adults. I sell my clothing only online mainly, and some fabrics and designs will require some adjustments with sizing. I didn’t want to deal with that; it’s easier in person when people can come and do a fitting. I am a perfectionist; I want the sizing to be perfect. And when you sell online, achieving that can be challenging. I then started to create wearable art t-shirts and tunics out of jersey fabric, and by doing this, I found my niche. After the 2008 economic crisis, the way people buy children’s clothing changed. The children’s wearable art clothes I was making were not selling as before, and I couldn’t express my art the same way. I had to readjust my business to a new reality and started to focus more on women’s clothing, where I could express my art and sell.

stamps on printing on fabrics
hand printing on fabric

I also hand print and paint my fabrics. I started when we lived in California. A few years ago, I started creating my own stamps, stencils, and screens for screen printing. I am constantly exploring and love playing with new materials and techniques. As I mentioned earlier, I’m a “starving artist” 🙂. Three years ago, I started hand-dyeing my fabric. 

fashion brand clothing francoise lama-solet
francoise lama-solet fashion brand

What inspires your design?  

hand painted scarves


Colors, a lot of colors and also flowers. My fabrics are very joyful and cheerful. Fabrics also inspire me.  

How do you choose the color palette for your paintings, and what are your favorite colors?

My favorite color is turquoise. However, I recently realized that I often work with blues and yellow. I like to work with a monochromatic and limited color palette, like with just two or three colors. Sometimes I get a new color, do a color swatch card, and then say: “Ok, I like it, and I am going to use it.” I often just look at the painting and then decide to add pink, for example. Something inside me tells me to add this color, and I do, and it works well on the painting. So it’s playing and experimenting and staying in the flow.  

There is one color I don’t use a lot: purple. But lately, I started experimenting with it and still struggle to use its full power. But part of being an artist is often about working out of your comfort zone to create something unique. And that’s why I keep experimenting with purple.  

purple abstract painting
turquise paintings nature by francoise lama-solet

How do you overcome creative blocks?  

I run and walk in Nature. When I run, I always have new ideas. It’s also important to take breaks. And sometimes, I look at other artists’ work, which can be very inspiring.  

Can you describe your style in three words?

artist from France francoise lama-solet

Happy impressionist inspiring

Where do you look for inspiration?

Nature. Most of my paintings are intuitive paintings. I will sometimes paint from photos, and when I do, it’s an interpretation of the photo. I take the elements that attract me and make it my own. I will add different details or erase some things in the picture; I will change the colors. Most of my paintings are based on emotions, which is more intuitive. For example, we went on a trip to Iceland, and I got inspired by one specific location and took many photos there. Back home, I did several paintings of that location, and photos helped me to revive my memories. Those paintings were less about the place and more about the emotions and experiences I felt traveling there. 

Sometimes I get inspiration from studying colors and experimenting with colors. 

colorful flowers paintings francoise lama-solet

My inspiration also comes from my paintings. I do some close-ups of my paintings for my website, and I often find the close-up would make another great painting. So here we go; I will work on a new one. Or maybe some elements from one painting will inspire a new one. Happy accidents too! I love happy accidents!

Happy accidents – something you didn’t intend to do but like the result, which happens when I am in total creative flow. I like that happy accident!  

small paintings acrylics francoise lama-solet

How do you balance the creative and business side of an artist’s life? 

It’s hard, but I try to do what I need to do. I would rather spend all my time creating, but I am a solopreneur, so I also have to allocate time to manage and promote my art and fashion brand. Creativity and business are two sides of the same coin. I could do better with the business side, but I need more time. We all need more time! I accept the business side as a necessity and a “must-do,” so I try to be less emotional about it and just do it.  

artist and fashion designer francoise lama solet
pink abstract painting

What is unique about your painting with the red dress and poppies that you have on your business card? 

red poppied and dress painting

I bring a certain elegance to my brush strokes and my fashion. Black, white, and red are very elegant color combinations, and I love elegant and flattering fashion. As I mentioned earlier, as a child, I wanted to work as a seamstress for the “grand couturiers” to create beautiful dresses. This painting is chic, and it represents me, my origins, my fashion, and thus business. One of my best friends commented: “That painting is so you!” 

Who is your favorite classic painters? 

Auguste Renoir  

What is your favorite city?

Paris, it’s in my heart and part of me. I also like Venice, but I still need to discover many cities. 

What is a beautiful day for you?

francoise lama-solet french artist

A spring day like today, when birds are singing, and flowers are blooming. The weather is essential to me and plays a significant role in my mood. When it’s raining, I am in a less creative mood. But, on the other hand, I love it when it’s sunny; it inspires and energizes me. 

What is your dream creative project?

I have many of them, for example, learning to paint with oil, cold wax, and other techniques. So keep growing in my art and have my paintings worldwide.  

Why do you think art is important for humans? 

Art is a contribution to people. It brings emotions to people. It can make them smile and be happy and bring inspiration and comfort. It can also take them to a special place. For me, art is beautiful, and that’s what I want to convey with my paintings – happiness, beauty, and elegance. Art is part of everybody’s life. It can be transmitted through painting, sculpture, cooking, dancing, acting, music, photography, etc. 

french abstract artist francoise lama-solet

What part of the painting process do you enjoy most?  

Discovering, experimenting, creating – the process itself. 

How long does it take to complete one painting?

That’s a question I’ve been asked a lot, and it is challenging to give a precise answer. The timing doesn’t depend just on the size of the canvas; other factors are involved. Sometimes for the same canvas size, it can take a few hours, and other times, several days or weeks. It depends on many factors: first, the number of layers, and I use many in some paintings. Second – the creative flow; sometimes it’s there, and other days not. Sometimes I get stuck and need to take a break and a step back to figure out where I want a painting to go.  

french painter in georgia state francoise lama-solet
painting with artist francoise lama-solet

What is your advice to the artists who are just starting their careers?

Surround yourself with other artists because the community is very important. Also, don’t give up and believe in yourself; keep playing and experimenting. Don’t be too hard on yourself, and I say that because sometimes we can be our biggest critique, and at some point, it can turn into a barrier, a creative block. You can self-sabotage yourself when you are in a critical mood. Also, don’t fear failure and mistakes because it’s part of the process. Learn from your mistakes. And, actually, sometimes mistakes can turn into success. The last is to trust the creative flow, and by this, I mean if you start a painting with one idea in mind, but during the process, it will not go the way you planned; at this moment, trust the flow. If you resist the painting, it will show in your work, brush strokes, lines, and other details. But if you follow the flow, you will be able to create something beautiful. So don’t get in your head.

fashion designer francoise lama solet
hand printed scarves by francoise lama-solet

Try to balance your time on social media apps and avoid thoughts like: “Ohh! There are so many other artists who are way better than me!” This type of thoughts will take away your creative energy. If you want to get inspired by looking at other artists, it is fine, but remember to work on developing your own style. Follow your heart and imagination. 

It’s also very important to show your work on social media, your website, and in art centers and galleries because that’s how people will get to know you and recognize your style, and some opportunities might knock on your door. 

 I also love sharing my techniques, and I am not afraid that people will “steal” it, but on the contrary, that’s an excellent way to generate more creative buzz around your art.  

creative artist francoise lama-solet

How can people find you online? 

I have a website, and I’m also on Instagram and Facebook.




When is your next exhibition and workshop?

I have a solo exhibition, “Full Bloom,” at the Gwinnett Historic Courthouse in Lawrenceville, GA, until July 31st, 2023.

I also have one painting that will be part of P Fine Art Gallery’s 8th International Tour Show and will be shown for two weeks in Suwanee, GA, from June 2nd till June 16th and will then travel to Espacio Gallery in London from July 11th till July 16th.

I also offer some Expressive Abstract Painting on silk scarves, but I have yet to schedule any workshop dates as I’m pretty busy with the art festival season.

Photography by Elena Sullivan from ArsVie photo studio.

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