Spotlight on the Artist – Susan Brende

Have you always been creative?
I was always coloring or drawing. I was a big fan of paint by numbers when I was a kid.

How did you start watercolor painting?
Only a couple years ago. I took Barb’s water color class in Dell Rapids. The rest is history.

What inspires you?
We live on Round Lake by Wentworth, SD. The birds in our neighborhood put me in the mood to paint.

What is your most important artist tool?
Good brushes. I’m not good at caring for my brushes. So a new brush is always a big “yahoo”.

Is there something you can’t live without in your studio?
Good light.

Is there an element of art you enjoy working with most? why?
I’m really into recycling. So using old books is so much fun to use with watercolors.
I do love my acrylics and go back and forth between watercolor and acrylics. The choice of medium is generally motivated by my mood.

How do you know when your work is finished?
I step away for a few days. One more look and if I think “that’s not bad” – then it’s done.

Is there a piece that you are most proud of? why?
Watercolor – Snow Dog. It was just fun to do. I originally did it in acrylic for a former student (who had taken the picture of his dog).

How do you overcome creative blocks?
I take a break.

Name three artists you admire.
Claude Monet (we visited an exhibit in Texas)
Harvey Dunn (I worked at the Harvey Dunn Center at SDSU in college)
John Green (my local hero)