A Bluethumb Success Story: Susan Trudinger
“It may have taken half a lifetime but it proves it’s never too late.” – Susan Trudinger
At the age of 62, Susan Trudinger is finally living the dream… well, just about. Thanks to her sales on Bluethumb, this August the Canberra-based artist plans to fulfil her life-long ambition to retire from her day job and be a full-time artist.
Susan has always enjoyed painting and drawing, but what started as a hobby, has eventuated into much more. “Being an artist is wonderful,” says Susan. “I have always painted because I needed the outlet, an escape from worldly concerns and challenges.”
Taking the Long Road Home by Susan Trudinger
Deeply influenced by the works of Rembrandt, Susan’s mother referred to her teenage years as the “dark period”. “I was interested in the strong contrast of light and dark falling on objects for many years, so my paintings were on the dark side.”
Once Susan left school, she entered the workforce. It wasn’t long until her desire to make more out of life encouraged the artist to move to Adelaide for a fresh start. “At this time I was at a crossroad and wasn’t sure whether I wanted to go to University or Art School,” Susan recalls.
Susan adding the finishing touches to Flower Abundance #10
To develop her creative talent, and surround herself with dedicated like-minded artists, Susan attended the South Australian College of the Arts and Education, now known as the University of South Australia.
She spent four years obtaining a Degree in Fine Art, majoring in painting, drawing, and photography. “They were some of the happiest years of my life. I started to see the world in a deeper way, and it shaped who I am today.”
After moving back to Canberra in her late twenties, Susan became a mother. It wasn’t long until she moved to Armidale in New South Wales to become a stay-at-home mum.
Susan showcasing Macaw
From city to country, Susan found the transition difficult to settle in. “I wasn’t happy with the way I was progressing, the passion I had for so long seemed to die.” To fill the void, Susan took up pottery and completed a Certificate in Ceramics.
After almost 20 years in a country town, Susan became a single parent at the age of 40. She was forced to start studying and return to the workforce. “I studied accounting and ended up working as legal secretary and paralegal.”
Ten years later, Susan was presented with the opportunity to work in the Middle East. After a year in Oman, she continued to travel throughout Europe. “I was in awe of the landscape, of the culture and the fine intricate designs on mosques and other buildings.”
Protea Love by Susan Trudinger
The experience changed her perspective, artistically and emotionally. “I had a profound spiritual experience and felt I was growing to another level. When I came back to Australia I noticed my work coming together with more ease and depth.”
When Susan returned to Canberra, she noticed a shift in her artworks. “My paintings started to have more colour, they have become more decorative, stylised, bright and colourful.”
Kick-starting a new era in her artistic career, she joined the Bluethumb family last year and hasn’t looked back becoming one of this year’s best-selling artists. “Since [joining] I have had consistent sales, which has enabled me to cut back on office work.” With her quirky composition and unique colour palette, we’re sure Susan’s work will continue to be popular with Australian collectors.
With her quirky composition and unique colour palette, we’re sure Susan’s work will continue to be popular with collectors nationwide.