An artist who can adapt, can survive
SUE Shreiber is lucky – she has managed to make her art commercially viable, something not many in the industry can boast.
In order t o achieve t his, she has morphed, changed and adapted her t echniques and styles to suit market trends, while always keeping her love of the work at its heart.
This willingness to adapt has seen her not only teach and produce commercial branding, but also perform a more literal kind of art with her pyrotechnic business.
Born in Germany, Sue spent her formative years travelling widely before finally immigrating to Australia in the early 1970s.
While she credits this early travel with helping her “discover” her love of art, Sue has also made a practice of staying up to date with technique, and boasts an impressive number of degrees and certificates to her name.
First enrolling at RMIT in Melbourne, she completed a Bachelor of Fine Arts, majoring in Printmaking.
In 1997, she finished a Degree in Illustration – leading to more commercialised work.
More recently, Sue has studied for her Certificate IV in Design, and completed a Surface Pattern Design Course online from the UK.
Although her resume is impressive to say the least, it is the love of the artistry itself that has seen Sue continue her studies.
“I enjoy learning and if a course comes up which appeals to me, I’m happy to do it – to learn new technics and enjoy the art,” she explained.
“I learnt early on that I had to adapt – when I did my Bachelor in Fine Arts, it was all about what was behind the drawing, the deeper meaning within it.
“I realised then that I was too commercial for fine art like that.”
Throughout her career Sue has dabbled in almost all artistic styles, from pastels to ink, mixed media to photography.
Her most recent love has been working with scratchboards – a relatively modern art approach that involves “scratching” an image onto paper.
“I love scratchboard – it’s a really intensive way to make an image, but I enjoy it,” Sue said.
“It does take a lot of work to achieve a good result, but the detail you can get into the image is impressive.”
Moving to the North East in 2011, Sue became involved with Made in Mansfield when she saw a post on Facebook back in March.
She has t hr own hersel f i nto t he Mansfield community, and is due to teach an artist’s course at MACE i n term four.
Although she still exhibits, teaches and does work for herself, Sue is realistic about why she has survived in a typically cutthroat industry.
“I’ve been successful as an artist I think because of my wide range – I have never stuck to just one thing - I’ve allowed myself to adjust as I moved along,” she said.
“When I think about all those people I went to art school with, probably only three or four of them are still practising.
“Being versatile has meant I can continue my work.”
You can see Sue’s artwork on display at Made in Mansfield, or on her webpage at www.katzartdesigns.com.
MIXED ART: Sue Schreiber has made a point of adapting her art styles through the years. She is pictured at Made in Mansfield with a ceramics piece.
SCRATCH IT IN: An example of a scratchboard work completed by Sue.