Interview: Suzy 'Pal' Powell

Suzy 'Pal' Powell

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Describe the time you first realized that creating was something you absolutely had to do?

I have created as long as I can remember. I was embroidering and making doll clothes before I even started to school, even with out patterns.

 How old were you?

Probably 5? I can’t remember.

 Who or what inspired you at the beginning of your art life?

Probably an elderly friend who was an awesome pastel portrait artist.  She encouraged and mentored me until her death.  In the back of my mind I looked up to artists and always wanted to be one but never thought I could be .

Who or what inspires your art life today?

All artists! Everybody is so different, and I love seeing him or her excel and do well with their work. Western art is especially my favorite, along with sketching.

Anytime I see a cowboy, horses, spurs, etc. I get so excited and want to re-create the scene!

Why do you make art?

I have to make art. It is who I am.

What are you trying to communicate with your art?  What element(s) of your inner spirit is reflected in your art?

I don’t know. I just paint what I love.  I think happiness is reflected. Or at least I hope so. I have been told it looks happy.

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Is the atmosphere or design layout of your creative space/studio an important element in your creative process—why or why not?

No, I wish I could keep it clean and organized but I can’t so no probably not. I can paint or sketch anywhere. I am not organized or real neat.

Is there something—a keepsake, an inspirational quotation, a photograph—you keep in your studio for inspiration or motivation?

I normally play music and I keep a quote in sight…’Father Glorify yourself through the work of my hands today’…written by Bill Craig.

What kind of routines or rituals do you incorporate into your creative time? If you have one element or principle of art you enjoy working with the most, please describe it? 

No routine, other than trying to sketch something every day. I love keeping sketchbooks.

Currently, which creative medium do you work in? What, if any, other creative medium would you love to pursue?

I work in mixed media collages and watercolor, along with sketching each day.

And I would love to become a better sketcher and oil painter.

What is your most important artist tool?  How does this tool factor into your art making?

Probably my most important tool would be good brushes and good paper, along with my ipad or phone for taking photos. If you don’t use good paper its hard to get the watercolor to do what you want it to. (and that doesn’t always work either) I love watercolor for that reason, so unpredictable.

How do you keep yourself motivated? 

This is a hard question. Sometimes I have to make myself go out to my art room and do something.  If I have good photo references to use, it’s easier.  Sometimes a trip down a back road helps. New scenery.

What one piece of advice would you give to an artist just getting started?

If they are serious, they have to work each day that they can, No matter what. Set aside time, and a space. Buy the best supplies you need. Don’t skimp on tools. It’s just like a mechanic, needing a toolbox full of tools to get the job done. Also, my favorite thing to tell them is ‘It’s just paper and paint, Not a matter of Life or death, just enjoy the process.’

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If you wish, please share with us any other aspect of your art life—professionally and/or personally—that hasn’t been answered in the above questions. 

God has truly blessed me by allowing me to create and make so many wonderful friends through art!

The Internet has played a big part in my art career, I am grateful for that.

For what one thing would you like to be remembered? 

As far as art…

Maybe that I loved to create all kinds of things, and did them all with my best ability with passion. But most of all, that I LOVED to share what little bit I knew with any and everybody, so that maybe their art career might be a little easier and faster than mine has. I never had any art in school, and had to work so hard every day that I could to try to learn and improve. As far as my family that they were loved and could always count on me.

Describe yourself in one word.


Susie Kelly FlatauComment