As my first exhibition, the Big Art fair in Hitchin it was a steep learning curve and most enjoyable! I gained so much from meeting other artists and studying how they exhibit their work. Everyone was very generous with their time and knowledge. I know I wasn’t the only new artist at this event. I think lockdown has encouraged a lot of people who live alone, as I do – having lost my partner in 2019 – to take up the paintbrushes they discarded in their late teens.
I’ve rediscovered my passion for art – for other people’s work and also creating my own. My style is probably not as commercially viable as some of the serene abstract landscapes on display at the Big Art Fair. However I now have the confidence to keep going and not be put off. I know, now, that it’s about identifying a niche market for my more distinctive Middle Eastern/desert collection. A number of artists have advised me to try using Instagram which allows me to explore a different way of sharing my art.
On Saturdays, I join professional Dutch artist Renate Van Nijen and a group of women from across the UK and Europe online. We paint together for two hours – new artists are welcome to join us! When I’m not painting, I’m writing my second book, Honeybees and Heartburn. My first, Butterflies and Baked Beans, was No 7 on Amazon “humour” listing for a brief moment in time. I’ve started giving humorous talks again, and I love it! I speak about discovering painting late in life, and blocking my sink with acrylics, never mind not being able to get into my dining room any longer because it looks like an art gallery! 2023 is looking busy … I have 25 WI (Women’s Institute) talks booked before next summer.
My painting and talks fit in nicely with my “proper” job (the one that pays the bills). Four days a week, I’m a development director at Kit & Caboodle, a London-based experiential events company. This allows me to put some of my more zany creative ideas to clients … creating giant props, taking the Ghostbusters Cadillac on tour, and more recently building a “pimp your ice-lolly parlour” at a Welsh shopping mall!
I enjoy the mix of activities I’m involved with, all inspired by creativity and fun!
Find out more: Suzi's Gallery