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Meet the artist: Suzanne Bang

In the section “Meet the artist” we portrait a talented artist who uses Old Holland colours.

When did you first start painting? Were you born with a paint palette in hand, or did your interest in art develop over time?

I loved art from a child but did not start painting until my last 2 years in high school. I would see paintings from various artist and fall in love with the images. I wanted to know how they created their art so I bought some basic supplies and started to teach myself how to paint.

Was there a moment when you decided to follow your path as an artist?

In the last years of high school I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life. I am dyslexic thus math and reading seemed impossible. I was wandering though classes and decided I would take drafting. It made sense to me. I realized I had to commit to a major study so I chose art. It was something I knew I could do. I achieved a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Printmaking with a minor in Art History.

Suzanne Bang

How can you describe your own style?

My style has changed over the years and I’m finally settling into modern realism with a focus on landscapes and still life subjects. Thorough the years, I have explored all spectrums of art to find what make me happy and the more realistic my work is, the happier it makes me. I have recently been taking courses from Kevin Murphy thought his Evolve Artist program online to learn hyper-realism. The new skills I am gaining from the course has brought my confidence and skills up to the level I have always dreamed for them to be.

Do you have a personal favorite piece? Can you think of a piece that was particularly fun to work on?

There is a painting I have of a tree, where the onlooker is peering up. Into the sky. This painting challenged me on perspective and it was one of the first times I was able to create an image more realistically. It is simple painting but everything came together easily on that one. Most of them have been a struggle to get where I want them to be.

Where do you derive your inspiration from?  Do you have a painting, which inspires you?

Camping and being in nature is the best inspiration for my landscapes. I love sketching and painting in the outdoors then coming back and working more slowly in my art room.  I hope to branch out more into portrait or more of a  fantasy genre over the next several years. So I’m looking to some friends of mine who are into Cosplay to help be my muses.

Which artist of the past would you most like to meet?

It is hard to choose between Salvador Dali or Albrecht Durer. If you make me choose one I will pick  Albrecht Durer. I have a minor in Art History and was awe struck by Dutch, Flemish and Germanic artists from between  the middle 1400s though the late 1600s. Albrecht Durer’s prints and painting are so beautiful. I would love to learn from him.

What is your favorite art gallery / museum and why?

Rijksmuseum has to be my favorite. My first time there it was under construction and the Dutch Masters wing was open. I spent hours looking at each of the paintings analyzing how they created their work. I felt so many emotions looking at the various painting. Any place you lose time is worth going to.

What was the last exhibition you went to?

Over the summer I attending a Science Fiction Fantasy convention in Atlanta Georgia called Dragon Con. They have a section dedicated to fantasy artist from all over the world. Their show gave me a close up look at some amazing works some where between dreams and reality.

Which artist materials do you use and why?

Currently I’m exclusively using Old Holland oil paints in my works. One of the reasons I joined the Evolve Artist program is because we use the Old Holland paints for all our assignments. I discovered Old Holland some 10+ year ago when I was trying to find out what paint brand fit me and my work. I bought a few tubes of the same colors from several artist quality brands. I then created the same image with each one to see how they worked. Old Holland worked best for me, with how easy the pant flows and blends. They are consistent from tube to tube, and that allows my mixing to be consistent. I also know I can recreate a color days/months later and touch up areas.

The brushes I use are from various brands and mixes of synthetics to natural bristles. I can’t decide on which one I like best as it changes with the surface and image I’m working on. As far as surfaces, I love linen. I have never liked too much texture on my subsurface regardless of it being for printing or painting. I like  gessoed hardboard as well.

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