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Fontaine Jacobs, Artist 832.474.2882 Fontaine Fine Art © 2018-2019 Fontaine Jacobs

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Story by Sue Mayfield Geiger | Photos by Keving M Cox May 13 | Coast | Daily News


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Fontaine Jacobs

(Right) Fontaine Jacobs and her newest Weimearaner, Trey, Some of Jacobs'painting includes a mix of florals abstract, still lifes, animals and people

Grace Fontaine Jacobs
Pleasure Pier

Maiden Voyage

Room With a View


Great Blue Heron

Painting is my refuge

Fontaine Jacobs started drawing at a young age. She even painted theatre sets as a teen and young adult, but her mother swayed her into becoming a teacher. Yet she never lost her love of art. She took up painting and sold some pieces while living in Memphis, Tennessee where she met and married her husband. After subsequent moves to Virginia and California, she went to work for an ad agency where she climbed the ladder from Art Director to Vice President. "I got my creative fix from doing ad concepts, logo design, and brochure development," Jacobs said.

After a move to Friendswood in 2005, she decided to get serious about her art, and by 2009, her portfolio was blossoming. "I met other artists in my Polly Ranch neighborhood and we started a group called PRADO (Polly Ranch Art and Design Organization)," she said. Jacobs (who is self-taught) admits she studied with art teachers over the years, but reached a point where all she really needed to do was just paint.

Her influences include Peter Paul Rubin, John Singer Sergeant, Andrew Wyeth, and George Campbell of Galveston, among others.

Calling her style somewhere in the middle of realism and impressionism, she likes to work in several mediums and capture an image with the least amount of brush strokes."I like the happy accidents that happen with watercolor—you can just throw paint and have something emerge," Jacobs said, who also likes the speed of acrylic and the forgiving nature of oil. Her favorite subjects are people. "I love doing portraits and figurative work—I'm a big people watcher. I love to see the colors in their faces."

The paintings throughout Jacobs' home and studio are a mix of florals, abstracts, still life, animals (she raises Weimaraners), and, of course, people. One of her newest works is the Galveston Pleasure Pier. Her most poignant piece is that of a nude that she painted a mere two weeks before she got a diagnosis of breast cancer. After a double mastectomy, she is cancer free, but that painting is one that she won't ever sell. "Shortly after I painted it, I felt a lump, so I have a connection with that painting," Jacobs said.

Jacobs does not depend on the muse to jumpstart her creative juices. "My inspiration comes from just the beauty around me. I have so many paintings rolling around in my head, so I don"t lack for ideas," she said. She goes to the Bay Area Plein Air (landscape painting in the open) group weekly. "We meet at places like Armand Bayou, Challenger Park, and Maas Nursery, she said. "I work in oils when I paint with this group because I don't have to worry about it drying."

Her current painting in progress is a night scene of the Kemah Boardwalk, but it's not unusual for Jacobs to have four or five paintings in progress at once, especially if preparing for a show. She has exhibited at multiple venues including Island Gallery in El Lago and Mod Coffee Shop and Mosquito Cafe in Galveston. She donates a portion of her proceeds to breast cancer research and low income housing development. Jacobs was recently contacted by The Artist Within studio in Kemah to paint 30 paintings for their inventory and will start teaching classes for them in May.

When not in front of the easel, Jacobs enjoys cooking, gardening, furniture design, jewelry making and meditation. "Painting is my refuge," she said. "It centers me, challenges me and provides me with my sense of self." Her confidence comes through to reflect that in her very own self-portrait.

"I've learned not to let any painting scare me," Jacobs said. You can create angst that is paralyzing, but I don't let that happen. I am having too much fun," she said.