Suzanne Oel
artist biography

See Suzanne's work in the gallery

Suzanne’s life and artwork have been inspired by the natural beauty of the surrounding area of her birthplace: Calgary, Alberta, Canada. She studied painting and visual communications at the Alberta College of Art and Design in Calgary. Beginning her career in Edmonton, she worked as an illustrator/designer for Access Network. Then, with Studio 3 Graphics, she produced drawings of ancient creatures for exhibits in the new Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology. After this, Suzanne started her own business as a freelance artist. Working in Edmonton, various clients helped to broaden her experience: Edmonton Opera, Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, the Citadel Theatre, the Edmonton Public Library, Public Transit, Edmonton’s Children’s Festival, The Valley Zoo, various restaurants, Elk Island National Park, Dow Chemical Canada, technology companies, Alberta Government departments of Energy, Social Services, Education, etc., various equipment businesses, international pipeline inspection companies and many other corporate contacts.

Teaching and children have affected her perspective and artwork. Suzanne instructed adult classes of illustration and wildlife drawing at Grant MacEwan College in Edmonton. Later, she taught art lessons to children of various ages. Living in the Foothills, raising farm animals and pets, leading 4-H clubs and maintaining an acreage have led to additional interests, such as building and architectural artwork and concern for the environment. Suzanne has designed an internationally best-selling book cover, won an award from Potlatch Paper Company for excellence in design, has had her work featured in Studio Magazine, won art awards for painting entries, and has designed and/or illustrated the covers for a number of magazines, including Opera Canada.

Traveling and exploring art, architectural and political history has given Suzanne a chance to experience the diversity of the arts throughout the world. This has enabled her to bring home some of the energy of amazing historical creations to inspire her to communicate beauty in her corner of the world. Visiting museums and special architectural wonders in Germany, Switzerland, the Netherlands, France, Austria, Slavic countries, Greece, Israel, Italy, Canada, west and central USA, San Francisco and New York has exposed her to culture, histories and ideas – leading to a continued desire to explore new media.

Suzanne’s passion for history and influential symbolism and images has led to more recent developments; such as, working on restorations & renovations of old churches, finishing & painting a 9’ statue of St. James, artdirecting-finishing-painting-installing a life-size statue of Mary Our Mother of Hope, and designing the artwork and feature wall details for a new St. James church in Okotoks, including a mosaic and painting installation. Dreams of producing meaningful artwork have materialized as she has created wildlife paintings, designed book covers, built mosaics, and designed-written-illustrated her own small book of poetry and images. She envisions a prolific future in the arts with her corporation: sisters@art inc., sisters and friends at heart creating works of art.

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