1. Tell me a bit about your background and how long you have been an artist/crafter.
I have been making art off and on for most of my life. I have worked on films, been a jeweler’s and a photographer’s assistant, a landlord, designed handmade greeting cards, been a stay at home mom and had my own restaurant. About 5 years ago, I got out of the restaurant business and got a job teaching high school art and I have thrown myself into making art more fully and began showing and selling my work.
2. Where do you find your inspiration?
Looking at art inspires me. I constantly buy books, look at art on the Internet and gallery hop. I also am inspired by cellular images, textures, colors and how they relate to each other and the way shapes interact. Oh, and my students inspire me often.
3. Do you sell your work, or is it purely for pleasure?
I am lucky to be selling my work, but I will do it no matter what! The pleasure I get from creating is unparalleled. I sell my fruit paintings and mixed media collages on Etsy at http://www.abstractheart.etsy.com/ and have other work on my blogs http://www.susanfoss.blogspot.com/ and http://www.c-scapeduneshack.blogspot.com/ and my website where I post my larger abstract oil paintings http://www.susanfoss.com/
4. If someone was looking to take up this craft should they have any related experience before they start?
I have always been a fan of-if you have a desire to do something, just do it. Learn all you can as you go, but don’t let lack of experience stop you or get in your way.
5. What would be your top 5 tips for a beginner?
- Look at art; saturate yourself with it-books, magazines, websites, galleries, museums, etc.
- Take some workshops or classes at a local arts organization, or find some free online demonstrations.
- Get yourself some art supplies and just experiment-every day.
- Join Etsy-right away!
- Research, join online forums, and ask questions.
6. What would be your top 5 items of essential equipment?
- Paint-oil, acrylic, watercolor
- Matte medium (I go through gallons of it!)
- X-acto blades
- Paper-drawing, watercolor, patterned, maps, all kinds!
- Good paint brushes.
7. Can you recommend a technique or ‘tips’ book ideal for a beginner?
Collage books by Claudine Hellmuth and book binding and journaling books.
8. Can you recommend any brands to look out for, when buying equipment or kit?
Golden Acrylics and mediums, Utrecht and Dick Blick Art Supplies.
Thank you Susan for sharing your art with us and I wish you every success in the future.