I have not been painting much of late, however this is one of the small pieces I have worked on over the last year and I have a fondness for it. I have found the need to put down the brushes for the last week as the other work has felt forced and off. It feels like a winter season in my art world and I am not sure when the thaw will come.
Meet Rocky, a sweet dog who's portrait I was honored to work on last month. Oil on panel, 8x8 inches. Thank you Leslie for asking me to do this for you!
DO check out my Suzanne Elizabeth Art Etsy shop OR this website shop for a 20% savings on all limited and open edition prints. It is time to save up for another trip abroad and I would love for you to have some of my work in your homes and get myself back to Italy for more painting inspiration and language immersion:)
Also, all available originals are marked in each gallery section, so if you want one, please contact me for prices. Payment plans available upon request.
I have been very regularly posting my work on Instagram lately and have been working with a company called SelfMade which helps edit my images to look very smart and classy online! It has been fun. Below are a couple of examples of their work. And here is the link to my Instagram page: https://www.instagram.com/suzypaintspictures/
I have a handful of small paintings in the works right now, from mini 2.75x2.75 to 12x12 inches. I have had fun playing with favorite photos I have taken that want to become immortalized in paint. Here is a gas station painting from the big move from Portland to Santa Fe last October. More sneak peaks to come! This photo is not quite the best, erg, but you get the idea:)))
I have donated two prints (pictured below) and a box set of eight assorted gift cards and envelopes to the Saturday, July 29th Moondays Red Tent Event in Portland, OR. It is from 12pm-4pm and there will be free massage, tarot readers, refreshments, entertainment, prizes and more! Address is 4050 NE Broadway St, Portland, OR 97232 at the SomaSpace Movement Arts and Healing Center.
Advanced tickets $10, day of $15...Proceeds from this event will help to establish a permanent, brick and mortar Moondays Red Tent, honoring women and their cycles.
For more information about Moondays and the event, visit the website! http://www.moondays.com/events.html
I was recently at my Mom's new home in Montana and saw a couple of paintings for the first time in over ten years. Here is one I did as a student the summer of 1998 in a studio at the University of Puget Sound. It is now in my parent's kitchen.
I was asked to be part of a brand new online magazine that was launched January 20th, 2017...it was founded by Sana Goldberg, a nurse, and brings together health care, arts (writing, visual arts, film...) and social justice issues all in one place. I am posting this WAY too late for you to actually see the work in there, but DO visit this special new magazine for education and inspiration. Here are a few of the images they chose to accompany the articles in January. Click this link to get there! https://my-nightingale.com/
Hello folks! I'm sitting in my living room in California surrounded by my cards and prints just waiting to be shipped out as Christmas gifts! To ignite this gift-giving fire, I am offering handmade cards for just $3 (usually $5) and fancy boxes of 8 assorted cards and envelopes for $20 (usually $25) plus shipping. I can ship out your order right away in most cases, but if you want any images of paintings I don't have in stock it will take about a week for me to process and ship. Message me for payment details or with any questions!! Thank you:)) and I look very forward to shipping out some treasures.
One of my favorite things in life is spending time on my computer in the airport before a flight. I get so much inspiration before I travel. I feel everything is possible and excited to be alive, two very welcome sensations!
After a painstaking search, my sister and I found an apartment in Oxnard a few days before Thanksgiving and we were absolutely relieved to land. Then, as fate would have it, I stumbled into a job the next day...one of those spirited encounters that remind me that I need to CHILL out and not force things to happen. As all the TRYING I was doing to find work/a home felt like hitting my head against a wall for three weeks. There is nothing like the feeling of alignment...the right place at the right time...and us finding the apartment finally created the opening for me to walk into a new job effortlessly. We were not wanting to live in Oxnard at first, as it is in Ventura County but not the most beautiful place. Think America on steroids...cars cars cars, giant intersections and megastores and chains. I was avoiding this kind of living for the last 17 years in Portland!! But crazily enough, I find it humorous and I know I am supposed to be here right now. I go to Walmart on a regular basis and I do not think I had ever been in one before.
Thank heaven for the quiet, clean apartment, its patio, and the gorgeous pool and hot tub oasis. It even has a fitness center! (It better, though, as the rent is ridiculous. They want your first born over here just to move into a place). I really don't know how we all make it in this world and I am working on figuring that one out...
A reminder that I am accepting commissions right now, and have a super special going on for the rest of the year. An 8x8 custom oil painting of a photo (family, pet, whatever you want!) for $75, or an 8x10 for $150. You can email me directly to get one going or check out this link to my Etsy shop...
Good morning from Starbucks! Eleven years ago I would have judged anyone going into a Starbucks after they closed down my beloved Torrefazione Italia, but it has become my office for the last week and I am waaay over that one anyhow;). I have been staying at a Motel 6 right near the beach for a week and coming here in the mornings to search for homes, jobs, and to keep up with my art business online.
I have experienced my share of challenging periods in my life, but I must say that this feels like one of the most turbulent and confusing (not only that, it feels like a collective turbulent time because of the election). No, I did not plan this particular part of my journey out ahead of time...it was just a knowing it was time to leave New Mexico and the desire to get closer to LA to get closer to Italy...but I had no idea how difficult it would be to get settled here. I think it was best I did not know, but wow, what a time to practice staying in the moment, in my body, breathing, praying, screaming...all of the above. I have had my share of freak-outs and I wake up every morning holding my heart. The only thing that helps is to get up and shower and start moving.
Thank heaven for the support of my family and friends (MOM and DAD, thank you big time) to help me stay here, to keep from running off the end of the Ventura pier;)... And for the sunshine and ocean which are the gigantic silver lining in all of this. And Archangelo Corelli...I am listening to you right now and my god you are a genius comforter.
Raising a glass, well, a paper coffee cup, to the unknown, to trust, and to focusing on the abundance that is here, that is everywhere, holding us all and wanting us all just to notice what we have.
Here are three of the latest paintings I completed after my trip to Italy. I was in Cerrillos, outside Santa Fe, for a month taking time to rest and paint after my trip to Italy. I got to stay in a beautiful log cabin in the desert where the sun shone almost every day. I took long walks and stared at the desert landscape everyday. It was so so beautiful. The land...all the prickly bushes and dirt surrounding the house...seemed to hold me and take me in while I was there.
I have a ton of energy at the moment and plan to capitalize on it by sending out a little update. The beginning of this week marked 'phase 3' of my trip. Originally I was planning on taking the Italian course for four weeks and then traveling south to Palermo or over to France. I decided instead to remain in Siena where I spent another week in school (but with private lessons). Then, this past week I began painting as I thought I would rather spend my time and energy working than traveling...plus I have already seen so many new cities and art and have a ton of photos collected and ready to become paintings.
The latest news is that I am having a little (little being operative word here!!!) art show at the school of all the small paintings I am currently working on. This is very exciting, as it gives me a clear and fast approaching deadline to create about 10-15 small pieces. It is a bit much to do in a total of 14 days;) but I am determined to go all out here. I have spent the last four days painting all day and I feel full of energy and focus, the likes of which I cannot say I have experienced in a long time. Part of the reason I needed to leave Portland was that I was exhausted of doing both work and art. I felt fatigued and spent so much of the time. Having even four days to completely give myself to the artwork has been illuminating.
Here is a picture of one that is almost done. My goal is to not go as detailed as usual:)
The following was written two weeks ago! Time is flying over here...
I am into my fourth and final week of class here in Siena. We are in the middle of a very intense thunder and lighting storm at the moment, a break from the almost non-stop string of sunny days. I can feel the electricity and it is simultaneously exciting and disconcerting. I am finding it a perfect moment to catch up on my posts, which serve the purpose of getting me to sift through all my photos and organize them now, while it is all still fresh.
I visited Pisa and Arezzo last week and enjoyed both cities very much! In Arezzo I was lucky enough to go to a provo for La Giostra, which is a yearly medieval event there. It is essentially a jousting competition among four competing contradas. I highly recommend you 'Google' it to see what I am talking about! Here is a photo I took of a gentleman practicing during the day.
I loved Pisa. The architecture and ornamentation astounded me and I felt deep appreciation for their beauty and presence. I went up the tower as well as visited the baptistry, basilica, cemetery and museum in the vicinity of the tower.
Hello! It has been well over a week since I last posted on this page as it has been a very busy one filled with one extraordinary experience after another, yet sprinkled with moments of absolute frustration at not understanding what I am doing in Italian class;)
On August 16th, I went with my classmates to the Palio and OH MY GOD it is hands down one of the most exciting events I have ever attended. The whole week leading up to it was filled with event after event, all in anticipation for a horse race lasting 90 seconds or less. The pageantry blew my mind. For instance, on Saturday there was a parade through the city and into the duomo that I thought was a big deal...but little did I know that yesterday for three hours before Palio started an even bigger parade would march through the city and into the Piazza del Campo. Only men participate in the parade, dressed in medieval costumes carrying (and throwing) flags, playing drums, wearing suits of armor, etc etc. This is serious business. The finale is four large cows pulling a medieval cart with the banner that is awarded to the winner of the Palio.
The night preceding the parade, each contrada set up rows of tables throughout the city and they ate dinner together while singing, clapping and making merry. The energy was infectious. I walked around town that night absorbing the excitement and taking photos when I could. Even the kids were running around playing games after 11pm!
After having our bags checked by the Polizia (the security was very tight and we could not bring water bottles into the piazza) we walked with a very tight crowd into the center of the Piazza del Campo where we stood for the next two hours watching the parade finish, and then of course the main event, the race. I had never been to a horse race before this and I was enthralled. There were two false starts, but when it began I was amazed with how fast they went...three laps around and it was finished. One of the jockeys was thrown off his horse...ouch. The winner was the contrada Lupa, and the people from that contrada ran screaming toward the winning horse and jockey in celebration. Then they did not stop singing and celebrating the rest of the night and are still going at this afternoon across the street from my window. They paraded through the piazza last night, then again this morning, dressed up in costume, playing drums and carrying their flags. The men put pacifiers in their mouths (I kid you not) as a sign of their victory, and wear them while marching through the city. It is a symbol of rebirth or something;) I do wish I could have captured these photos on a better camera, but these images give you an idea of the experience.
Holy Mary. Since I last posted so much has happened, but I am not going to go into the MIND BLOWING time I had at the Palio today...that needs its own post tomorrow.
In the last week, I have visited two stunning Tuscan cities, seen the inspiring remains of a 12th century cathedral, and to top it all off saw my first practice race for the Palio. On Sunday morning, I saw the horses and jockeys doing a provo (practice run), and it was so exciting. It is especially interesting considering the education I received about the history of the event, which dates back to Medieval times.
On Saturday I happened to be out walking when a parade of all the contradas began. This one consisted mostly of kids dressed up in medieval costumes carrying flowers and candles, followed by drummers and flag bearers. It finished at the duomo with four giant cows pulling a medieval cart. This is not something one sees everyday!
First off, let me confess that I am quite buzzed at the moment. After Italian class today, I took myself out to lunch for tortellini and red wine to celebrate completing actual phrases in class for the first time. Yesterday was a rough one, with all my triggers up around being in school, feeling stupid, and like I was totally full of s?$&t, thank you very much. Thankfully, today has felt like redemption from those wretched voices and I can feel brightness emerging within me again.
For the first time since I arrived on Saturday it rained. Not just rain, but dramatic thunder as well and the cool air feels refreshing after four days of heat. During lunch it stormed suddenly and forced all the people from the outside tables to come inside. As a result, I met a solo traveler from Germany, as they needed us to consolidate the tables inside to accommodate the displaced diners. Thankfully she spoke english and we had an unexpected and lovely conversation that we would not have had if the storm had not come.
Now, I am settling in to study my homework for the day, which will be followed by a nap.
Here are a few more pictures I have taken in the last few days.
SHOOT!! I just deleted the post I spent the last hour working on. GRR.
To sum up: I spent the last two weeks with family in both Flathead, Montana and Santa Fe, New Mexico and it was medicine for my soul. I miss them all so much and to be able to BE with each of them did my heart much good.
Now, I have landed in Siena after two days of planes, trains, buses and automobiles. Yikes and thank heaven that part is over. I am living with a host family that speaks very little English and I start my Italian classes first thing tomorrow.
Today I walked around Siena, often in circles, just to get a feel for it and find restaurants I want to eat in and cafe's with wifi and espresso. There are plenty of both! I drew a little, wrote in my journal and was taken with all the details around me.
Now, as promised, pictures of a few moments.
I am at PDX waiting to board my flight to Kalispell where I will meet one half of my family for vacation at Flathead lake. I am so relieved to have made it through the move, the last 22 days of work, boarding the kitties, and the tying up of loose ends. It was a challenge to say the least, but the sweetness of being at this end is completely worth it. Somehow I whittled down my 'stuff' to two bags, one of which I will need to ditch before flying to Italy August 4th. I will take one backpack, as I do not want to be weighted down unnecessarily.
Friends have helped me out generously along the way the last two months with storage space, art purchases, loans, gifts, lifts, burritos, and beds to sleep in. To all of you, OH MY GOD, thank you. Even though I freaked out a little this week at the idea of not working and having steady income, I know at this moment it is necessary. The release of the old...jobs, apartment, city, way of life....is absolutely necessary to allow the change I have felt coming for years. But timing really IS everything, and to be at the place where all the elements converged to push me out of where I was and into this seat at PDX feels quite right.
To those of you who came out on Sunday, June 12th to my moving art sale and reception, THANK YOU. I was astounded by the generous support and encouragement from you as I get ready for this move. And to those who could not make it, the work is still up and for sale at Genie's Cafe 1101 SE Division St in Portland through July 11! Cards, prints, and originals discounted (*only exception is new Night Falling over Portland Limited Edition Print). All available originals are marked under their picture on my website, and are 30% off or more. If there is one you MUST have, I am willing to work with your budget or set up a payment plan to make it yours.
If you have any questions or want to arrange a viewing, please contact me at my new email address: firstname.lastname@example.org. THANK YOU!