past meetings

September 7, 2018

Suzanne Siminger, a contemporary realist landscape artist working currently in oils and watercolor, gave us a superb glimpse of a journey of an artist. Suzanne has been painting her whole life using various mediums and received her formal art education at San Francisco Art Institute, San Francisco (Master of Fine Arts) and Chouinard Art Institute, Los Angeles (Bachelor of Fine Arts).  She has had many life experiences working in Brazil with the Peace Corps, working at several TV stations as a graphic artist and court room artist, author of several books and artist in residence with numerous awards, solo and group exhibitions.

After living and painting in the Southwest for five years, Suzanne has returned to the Bay area and currently lives in Marin. She has pared down her interest in working in many mediums and with many subjects to focus on painting landscapes with oils or watercolors. She feels landscapes have an international appeal, are complex and keep the artist’s interest. By focusing her efforts on one subject, Suzanne feel she can go deeper in the landscape and become more accomplished. She spoke of plastic elements such as line, form, composition, color and tone. Suzanne feels the most important element is composition. Her vision is to make landscapes more contemporary not just a picture of a place. She selects a powerful image with strong forms and with artistic license edits the scene. Suzanne usually starts with a photo and then listens to where the painting takes her. Elements of a strong landscape include clear, bright air, stark, sharp rock formations with high contrast in lights and shadows and water with reflections. Favorite locations for inspiration are the Mendocino coast and the Southwest.  Suzanne usually works on several paintings simultaneously rather than one at a time to keep engaged and have a fresh perspective.

Suzanne shared some of her art journals. One was 45 years old and another a travel journal. Her latest book entitled In an Artist's Shoes: An Intimate Look at a Painter's Life in Art is based on a year-long watercolor sketchbook project where Suzanne painted and journaled daily. Keeping an active sketchbook and daily drawing allows Suzanne to experiment with composition and color while improving drawing skills.  More information of about Suzanne’s newest book and work can be found on her website.  


Suzanne also generously donated a copy of her book to the Sonoma Valley Regional Library.

Suzanne Siminger's website
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Suzanne Siminger.jpg

Suzanne Siminger, Contemporary realist landscape artist


"Crab fishing in San Francisco" from early journal


Journal from travels in Italy


New book: In an Artist's Shoes