Susan Lichtman Art
Does literature have an influence on your artwork? Where do you draw your inspiration? How can we tell stories through our art in a compelling and engaging way? My guest is Susan Lichtman, an accomplished artist and educator who has been shaped by her love of literature. In our conversation, Susan opens up about how she got started as an artist, the role storytelling plays in her artwork, how she constructs a painting, projects she is currently working on, and much more. I can’t wait for you to get a glimpse of Susan’s amazing artwork and her fascinating perspective!
Observational painting and storytelling.
Do you have a favorite observational painter? I’ve been exposed to so many wonderful observational painters throughout my career that I could never choose just one! Susan Lichtman is an immensely talented observational painter who has dedicated the last 30 years of her career to painting various rooms and angles in her home. Susan is an absolute inspiration for her ability to tell a compelling story through her work and keep the subject matter engaging after all those years. Make sure to check out the images of Susan’s artwork located at the end of this post!
Celebrating a love for literature.
It is really amazing how much literature and painting are so closing linked through the ages and even today. As an avid reader, I find myself continually inspired and drawn to literature, in fact, I believe it makes me a better artist. In our conversation, Susan Lichtman was kind enough to open up about her love for literature and how it’s influenced her career. The authors that Susan zeroed in on in her early career were Marcel Proust and Fyodor Dostoevsky. Fusing her love for literature and art, Susan currently co-teaches a course with her friend and Dostoevsky expert, Robin Feuer Miller. After they study the literature, Susan leads the class to make art in response to their reading. I loved hearing about this innovative approach to art and education and I know that artists like you will enjoy it too!
Get to know yourself as an artist.
As you progress through life you realize that with each passing year start to become more and more comfortable in your own skin. Does this same logic apply to your role as an artist? Don’t think of it as a zero-sum game, it’s not a yes or no question, your development as an artist takes time. Give yourself room to breathe and experiment, cut yourself some slack! As you evolve and change over the years, allow that same fluidity and sense of discovery to apply to your art career too. At the end of the day, listen to your gut and follow your intuition!
Putting a mirror up to society.
What is the role of the artist in our culture today? Have you ever really stopped to consider this question? It seems that now, more than ever, challenging artistic voices are needed to create a contrast to some of the darker corners of society and politics. Embracing creativity and disruption are political activities that need to increase. Does every artist need to have a political opinion and message? No. I find it immensely hopeful that as artists we can be part of the solution, cultivating a robust and diverse community where more and more voices are welcomed.
Outline of This Episode
- [0:55] I introduce my guest, Susan Lichtman.
- [2:50] How Susan got started as an artist.
- [11:00] Susan talks about storytelling and observational painting in her artwork.
- [16:00] How does Susan construct a painting?
- [19:45] Discovering when to paint and when to look at your subject.
- [24:20] Getting to know yourself as an artist.
- [27:00] How does Susan choose her pallet?
- [32:30] What is Susan working on right now?
- [39:00] Habits that help Susan with her creative process.
- [41:10] What is the role of the artist in today’s society? How will the art market change?
- [44:50] Advise that Susan has for an artist trying to get their career started.